"The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in
its net of wonder forever."—Jacques Cousteau

July 15, 2016

July 14 – Oak Bluffs, MA (Martha's Vineyard)

Edgartown Moorings

“I must be willing to give up what I am in order to become what I will be.” ―Albert Einstein

Today we took the bus over to Oak Bluffs to do a little shopping and exploring and enjoyed lunch over looking the ferry dock. Oak Bluff is a very quaint little town that is noted for its "gingerbread cottages" and well-preserved late-nineteenth-century buildings, but it’s definitely more touristy than Edgartown or Vineyard Haven. The ferries brings tourist by the hundreds to the docks here to enjoy the beaches, boats, parks, boutiques and cafes…there are tourist everywhere.
 
Oak Bluffs is well known for the Methodist Camp that was developed here in the 1830’s. The Methodists gathered in the oak grove each summer for multi-day religious "camp meetings" held under large tents and in the open air. As families returned to the grove year after year, tents were replaced by small wooden cottages. Over time the cottages grew more elaborate. Porches, balconies, elaborate door and window frames became common, as did complex wooden scrollwork affixed to the roof edges as decorative trim. The unique "Carpenter's Gothic" architectural style of the cottages was often accented by the owner's use of bright, multi-hue paint schemes, and gave the summer cottages a quaint, almost storybook look. They became a tourist attraction in their own right in the late nineteenth century and many of these charming cottages are still owned by the same families.

Oak Bluffs was settled by Europeans in 1642 and was part of Edgartown until 1880, when it was officially incorporated as Cottage City. In 1907 the town’s name was changed to Oak Bluffs and it’s the only town on Martha’s Vineyard that was consciously planned and developed specifically with tourism in mind. Nineteenth-century tourists, arriving by steamer from the mainland, could also choose from a wide range of secular attractions: shops, restaurants, ice cream parlors, dance halls, band concerts, walks along seaside promenades, or swims in the waters of Nantucket Sound. Resort hotels lined the waterfront and the bluffs.  

These pictures show just of few of the cute little gingerbread cottages in the campground area of Oak Bluffs
Lots of restaurants over look the Oak Bluffs Harbor
Park and beautiful home over looking Nantucket Sound
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