Summer may be coming to an end, but on Block Island, the fun never does. For those in the know, the Autumn in our oceanfront paradise may just be the best time of year to visit, and with so many fun Fall events, it’s easy to see why.
From the Experience Block Island weekend to the Block Island Half Marathon and the Holiday Shopping Stroll, our island will be packed with events and ongoing activities to keep you entertained all throughout the Fall.
Experience Block Island: Formerly known as "Taste of Block Island Weekend," Experience Block Island takes place from September 27 - 29. The weekend-long event offers a sampling of everything Block Island has to offer, including its delicious food and drink, activities and shopping, with most of it offered at discounted rates.
To participate, visitors buy an Experience Block Island Button, available for just $5 at the Block Island Visitor Center or right onboard the ferries. The button enables you to take advantage of the weekend’s many discounts -- from tours and tastings to paddleboard, kayak, bike and moped rentals. There’s so much to see and do, and at such great rates, you can try to do it all.
This has been a popular event, so it’s best to make reservations early. Check www.tasteofbi.com and www.blockislandinfo.com to plan your visit and call 401-466-2474 to book any activities that need prior reservations.
Block Island Farmers' Market: The Farmers’ Market at Legion Park is a popular weekly event all throughout the summer, but the farm-fresh fun doesn’t stop just because the summer is done. The event is held every Saturday, from 9 AM to 11:30 AM, and will continue through Columbus Day.
All kinds of tasty treats can be found at the market - from fresh fruits and veggies, to prepared artisan items and local seafood -- along with arts and crafts, live music and activities for the kids. For more information about the market, visit www.facebook.com/BlockiIslandFarmersMarket/ .
Block Island Half Marathon: On your marks and get set to run and for fun with the annual Block Island Half Marathon, taking off and ending at the Fred Benson Town Beach Pavilion on October 13.
The 13.1 mile race winds its way around the island’s beautiful views, beginning at 11:30 AM, and costs $40 to enter. For more information, call 401-466-3223 or visit www.active.com.
Block Island Self Guided Bike Tour: If running a race isn’t your thing, maybe a leisurely bicycle ride is more your speed. The Block Island Self Guided Bike Tour is actually a bit of a misnomer, because you can make the trek by bike, on foot, via moped or in a car.
Whichever method you choose, the tour is available to take year-round, and the Fall is a wonderful time to see the island in this way. To take the tour, go to www.so-new.org/tour/block-island-bicycle-tour to see the route and its 12 planned out stops at island points of interest. At each stop, you can scan a QR code with your phone that will play a video and give you information about the stop and it history. If you prefer, you can opt for a low-tech version of the tour by picking up a map of the route for free at the Welcome Center at 1 Water Street, or at any of the island’s bike rental shops.
Glass Float Project: If you haven’t yet participated in this ongoing island-wide scavenger hunt, the Fall would be the perfect time to do so. Now in its eight year, the project involves a number of glass orbs, created, numbered and stamped by local artist Eben Horton, which are hidden throughout Block Island’s beaches and Greenway Trails.
There will be 550 of the floats hidden throughout 2019. If you want to go looking, they are glass orbs about the size of an orange. The majority of them are clear glass, with 19 done in other colors, and one special one in gold leaf. If you find one, it is yours to keep. The organizers ask that you keep it to one per person, and that you then register the float’s number and the location where it was discovered at http://www.blockislandinfo.com/glass-float-project.
Holiday Shopping Stroll Weekend: Here the seasons begin to shift again, as we say goodbye to the Fall and welcome the Holiday Season on Block Island with a Black Friday like no other. Forget the hustle and bustle of the mainland and relax into shopping and savings on gifts and goodies with our local island flavor.
Taking place over the course of that entire weekend, from November 29 - December 1, the “Stroll” offers the opportunity to visit our town’s shops with the chance of a reward. Visitors can pick up a raffle entry form the Chamber of Commerce office at the ferry landing, and then have the entry stamped by all of our participating stores. Completed entries are then returned for a prize drawing on Sunday, December 1.
Other events will be held over the course of the weekend, including the annual 5K Turkey Trot run/walk on Saturday, and fitness classes from Island Fitness and Elevation Studio throughout the weekend.
For more information call the Block Island Visitor Center at 401-466-2474 or visit www.blockislandinfo.com.