Sag Harbor hosts annual Harborfest next weekend

Harborfest boat race (Credit: Pamela V. White/Flickr, file photo)

Harborfest whale boat race (Credit: Pamela V. White/Flickr.com)

Described as the biggest block party extending out over the water’s edge, Sag Harbor Harborfest 2016 will be a village-wide event taking place on Saturday, September 10 and Sunday, September 11.

Begun in the early 1960s as the Old Whaler’s Festival to attract visitors to the village, the event was renamed Harborfest in the 1990s and is now a celebration of Sag Harbor’s maritime history.

Expect Long Wharf to be filled with live music, raffles and food vendors. There will be old-fashioned children’s activities like corn shucking, tug-of-war and potato sack races. Look for the classic whale boat races on both days, clam chowder tastings on Saturday and a lobster roll eating contest on Sunday.

Other festivities will include an arts & crafts fair in Marine Park where over 60 local artisans and craftspeople will display and sell their hand-crafted goods. The “Whale of a Sidewalk Sale” will also be going on as merchants throughout the village will sell their wares on the sidewalk, offering special deals and promotions. Some of the shops participating in the sidewalk sale include Country Lane, Fisher’s Home Furnishings, Harbor Pets, In Home and The Wharf Shop.

“This is also an opportunity for our non-profit groups to raise awareness and much-needed funds,” Sag Harbor Chamber of Commerce President Lisa Field said. “The VFW, Sag Harbor Kids and Mashashimuet Park, which is raising funds to renovate their playground, will all be there.”

The Sag Harbor Chamber of Commerce is also raising funds to help restore the Sag Harbor Whale, a holdover from the Old Whaler’s Festivals. Donations will be collected during Harborfest in the windmill and at other vendor tables.

Donations can also be mailed to: Sag Harbor Chamber of Commerce, Save the Whale, PO Box 2810, Sag Harbor, NY 11963.

“While [the whale] will be part of this year’s festival, it needs a little TLC and we want to make sure that it will be around for the future,” Field said.

Harborfest festivities will kick off Saturday morning at 9 a.m. For more information, visit the Sag Harbor Chamber of Commerce’s website at sagharborchamber.com.