Village Spotlight: Oak Bluffs

Once known as “Cottage City”, Oak bluffs is a truly unique resort town on Martha’s Vineyard full of color and character to this day.

Located on the northeast shore of the island, Oak Bluffs offers an historical edge which includes The Flying Horses Carousel – the oldest operating platform carousel In the United States, The Martha’s Vineyard Camp Meeting Association in the heart of Oak Bluffs which showcases hundreds of painted Victorian “Gingerbread” cottages to be dazzled by, and of course the Tabernacle – the physical and spiritual center of the Campground which was built in 1879 by John W. Hoyt of Springfield, Massachusetts.

Home to the largest marina on the island, the finest golf course, beautiful public beaches, public parks and wildlife galore, Oak Bluffs is your destination of choice for trendy and artsy shopping.  See a movie, enjoy a night on the town with live entertainment and dancing (OB being one of the two “wet” towns on the island that serve alcohol), eat at one of the excellent restaurants or just take a walk down the thrilling Circuit Ave, the town’s main drag.

Several special events emphasize Oak Bluffs personality and take place annually:  Grand Illumination Night in the Campground cottages, the Monster Shark Tournament, and the August Fireman’s Association Fireworks.  At The Grand Illumination, residents of the Campground place ornate Chinese lanterns (some electric, some still lit with just a candle), around each Gingerbread Cottage. The lanterns remain dark until after dusk. At an appointed hour, people gather in the Tabernacle for a sing-along and community gathering. At the end all the lights go out and thousands of Chinese lanterns spring to life in a brilliant cascade of light throughout the campground. The celebration ends after visitors walk through the Campground enjoying the sights and sounds of an event taken straight from the turn of the century and brought to life every year in this quaint town of Oak Bluffs.

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