As the vibrant hues of autumn begin to paint the landscapes, there’s a subtle transformation underway here in Woods Hole. This quaint Cape Cod village undergoes a graceful transition from the lively fervor of summer to the serene embrace of fall. As the echoes of tourist chatter lessen, Woods Hole awakens to a new rhythm, inviting visitors to discover its hidden treasures and embrace the tranquil beauty that defines this coastal gem.
While the summer months bring an exuberant energy to the streets, fall and winter in Woods Hole whispers its own enchanting tale. The air carries the scent of salt and sea, mingling with the earthy fragrance of fallen leaves and eventually the crisp smell of freshly fallen snow. This is a time for leisurely strolls along quiet coastal paths, savoring the local flavors in our unhurried cafes, and immersing oneself in the unique culture that flourishes in this maritime haven beyond the busy summer months.
Though not as packed as our summer calendars the fall and winter still offers a variety of events and happenings in Woods Hole and throughout Falmouth. Here’s a round-up of some of our popular local can’t-miss annual events these next few months.
Woods Hole Events & Happenings
Nobska Lighthouse Tours
Don’t let the season pass you by without getting your chance at the best view in town atop the Nobska Light. Explore this historic lighthouse, learn about its history, and enjoy breathtaking views of Vineyard Sound from the lantern room. Tours of the lighthouse are typically available through early October thanks to the Friends of Nobska Light.
Halloween in the Hole
Residents and businesses flex their creative pumpkin-carving skills and show off their finished products along Water Street on the Saturday of Halloween weekend. Your favorite Woods Hole shops and restaurants get in costume and give out candy and refreshments to sugar-happy passersby. Following the family-friendly afternoon, Captain Kidd hosts an annual 21+ costume party that brings out some of the most impressive Halloween costumes you’ll see on Cape Cod. Guests vie for big prizes which have included Patriots tickets in past years. Come dressed to impress, dance to the deadly tunes of the DJ, and admire the transformed spooky space.
2023 date: October 28
Falmouth in the Fall Road Race
Falmouth in the Fall Road Race, a classic local road race held each autumn since 1979, is a seven-mile race which is run on the same seaside course as the ASICS Falmouth Road Race, and starts right here in Woods Hole. Enjoy cooler temperatures but much of the same camaraderie and local support as the famous Falmouth Road Race that happens each August!
2023 Date: November 5
Small Business Saturday
Small Business Saturday is a nationally recognized day to celebrate and support small businesses and all they do for their local communities. When we talk about supporting small business in Woods Hole it’s practically impossible to not! Most of our local businesses are independently owned, meaning that travelers to Woods Hole can directly support the community’s economy and help sustain local business owners as well as traditional crafts and practices all year long–and we appreciate that! Each year on Small Business Saturday you can expect local retail stores to offer a sale or discount, while our local restaurants typically participate by offering a happy hour special. Head to Woods Hole to shop local any day of the year!
2023 date: November 25
Caroling in Woods Hole Village
Join the Woods Hole community as they herald in the holiday season with caroling in Waterfront Park! Typically held on the first Friday of December this festive event features a seasonal sing-a-long of familiar holiday classics as well as hot cocoa and cookies! You can also visit local stores decorated for the season that get in the holiday spirit by staying open late and providing snacks and refreshments!
2023 date: December 1
Woods Hole Stroll
It’s the most wonderful time of the year in Woods Hole! There is quite simply no more special of a setting to soak in that holiday magic than right here in our charming seaside village! The annual Woods Hole Stroll takes place in mid-December and kicks off with the arrival of Santa himself by boat! Visit with him at the Woods Hole Science Aquarium then enjoy seasonal refreshments and holiday delights from our local businesses. Look out for the annual raffle to benefit the Falmouth Service Center as well as holiday specials and discounts. The Woods Hole Community Hall also presents the Solstice Singers for seasonal songs and the Woods Hole Library hosts a book sale as well as offering free crafts for the kiddos!
2023 date: December 16
Other Falmouth Events & Happenings
Falmouth Farmers Market
Falmouth Farmers Market is the place to find the freshest food around each summer season! The market runs weekly through early October, every Thursday at Marine Park overlooking Falmouth Harbor, on Scranton Avenue. The Thursday afternoon markets feature vegetables and fruits from farms in Falmouth, on Cape Cod and around Buzzards Bay and southeastern Massachusetts including local fish, eggs, pasture raised meats, breads, pies, pastas, herbs, flowers, and vegetable starts.
2023 dates: May – October 5
Cape Cod Marathon Weekend
Each October, The Mayflower Wind Cape Cod Marathon Weekend is produced by the Falmouth Running Club, a local non-profit running club. Race weekend includes a Marathon, a Marathon Relay, a Half Marathon, as well as a 5k! The event also features a Clam Chowdah Challenge for those who would like to tackle both the Marathon and the Half Marathon in the same weekend for a total of 39.3 miles. Staged in October at the start of fall foliage, these gorgeous courses run along Vineyard Sound and the beautiful coastal roads on the Cape. The scenic route hugs the Falmouth coastline of Nantucket Sound. Designed to maximize runners’ view of Martha’s Vineyard and the beautiful waters of Nantucket Sound it features the famous final hill included in the Falmouth Road Race which starts here in Woods Hole each August.
2023 dates: October 7 & 8
Pumpkin Day at Bourne Farm
Pick your own pumpkins and enjoy fall fun for the whole family at Bourne Farm, a beloved property on over 49 acres of fields, trails and woodlands that overlook Crocker Pond in West Falmouth. Activities at this October event typically include pumpkin picking, crafts, local artisans, live animal shows, pony rides, live music and tours of the historic home. All proceeds benefit Bourne Farm, a property of Salt Pond Areas Bird Sanctuaries.
2023 date: October 7
Arts Falmouth Jazz Stroll
ArtsFalmouth’s Jazz Stroll is held in mid-October at various locations across downtown Falmouth. Take in a delightful fall evening of jazz from local favorites, free and open to the public! It’s a great way to enjoy some incredible music, meet friends old and new, and enjoy the liveliness of downtown Falmouth. Come early to shop, and stay late to enjoy a meal!
2023 date: October 14
Fall Fun at Tony Andrews Farm
Tony Andrews Farm in East Falmouth often offers pick-your-own pumpkins and pick-your-own sunflowers throughout the fall season, as well as a free corn maze for the kids! Be sure to browse their well stocked farmstand for freshly picked produce while you’re there.
Falmouth Holidays By The Sea
Downtown Falmouth goes big for the holidays each year during their annual Holidays By the Sea weekend in early December which includes the arrival of Santa into Falmouth Harbor, the annual Jingle Jog 5K, the Falmouth Village Holiday Stroll, the Lighting of the Village Green, the annual Falmouth Chamber of Commerce Christmas Parade and much more festive fun! Enjoy the many unique shops, services, and restaurants in the heart of Falmouth Village. The street and storefronts are at their very best when decorated for the holidays. Shop and dine while enjoying entertainment throughout the village. Be on the lookout for all of your favorite holiday activities, including crafts, face-painting, refreshments, and music too!
2023 dates: December 2 & 3
Looking for more fun to be had this fall and winter in Falmouth? Be sure to check out the Falmouth Chamber of Commerce’s event calendar for exciting happenings all year through!