Shucks, It’s an oyster festival

Fall ushers in the oysters, and oyster lovers can celebrate at two signature festivals in the Chesapeake region.

In Virginia, the Urbanna Oyster Festival takes place Nov. 1–2. The Urbanna festival includes a parade, shucking contest, arts & crafts, music, activities for kids, and wine tasting.

While there, stop by the visitors center, which is housed in the Old Tobacco Warehouse. The warehouse, built in 1766, is one of the oldest surviving mercantile structures in the nation associated with the sale of tobacco. 

Admission is free, but parking fees are $10 for Friday and $20 for Saturday.

The wine tasting, for ages 21 and above, is $10.

For event details, call 804 -758 -0368 or visit

Southern Maryland is home to the St. Mary’s County Oyster Festival, which marks its 47th year on Oct. 19 and 20 at the St. Mary’s County Fairgrounds.

This family-oriented festival includes carnival rides and games, as well as a spotlight on food, shucking and cooking contests. There’s a wide range of live music, arts & crafts and historical exhibits.

Admission is $5. Children younger than 12 are free. For details, call 301-863-5015 or visit

Fall Foliage Bike Tour Helps the Homeles

A fall foliage bike ride through Talbot County, MD, takes place Oct. 19. It’s not a race, but a ride that tours five picturesque waterside villages and shares the view with skipjacks, local watermen and sailboat races

on the Miles River and the Chesapeake Bay.

Starting and ending at the St. Michaels Schools campus, the town of St. Michaels offers cyclists a chance to shop and dine after their ride.

The event offers a choice of three routes: an 11-mile family fun ride, a 31-mile fitness ride, and a 62.5-mile metric century ride. Each has fully supported rest stops. That includes free homemade pie for all riders.

The event will support the Talbot Interfaith Shelter, a voluntary interfaith-based service organization that provides safe, temporary shelter for people without adequate housing and raises awareness about homelessness.

Registration is required. For details, call 443-205-2828 or visit

Autumn Gatherings of Virginia Indians

This fall, some of Virginia’s Indian Tribes will host festivals that are open to the public.

The Chickahominy Indian Tribe’s 62nd Annual Fall Festival & Powwow takes place Sept. 28 & 29 on tribal grounds off Lott Cary Road, Providence Forge in New Kent County. This is Virginia’s biggest powwow. For event updates and directions, visit and click on “Events.”

The Nansemond Indian Tribe Education Days are scheduled 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Fridays in September on tribal land at Lone Star Lakes, 1 Bob House Parkway, in Suffolk.

The Rappahannock Tribe’s 14th Annual Powwow takes place Oct. 12 on tribal grounds in King and Queen County. This is a small, intimate powwow and is a good opportunity to get to know the people. The grounds are located at 5036 Indian Neck Road in Indian Neck.

30th Annual Native American Festival

The Indian Steps Museum of Airville, PA, hosts its annual Native American festival Sept. 28 & 29. The event features dancing, singing and drumming. Native crafts, art and food will be available. For details, call 717-862-3948 or visit

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1812 Fair & Re-enactment

The War of 1812 brought British raids and battles to the waters and shores of the Chesapeake. An important naval battle took place in 1814, at the mouth of St. Leonard Creek, on property that is now part of Jefferson Patterson Park and Museum. The park will host an 1812 fair and re-enactment that recreates life in Southern Maryland during the early 1800s 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 28.

The event features tactical demonstrations and re-enactments, camp life, live entertainment, crafts, music and hands-on activities. Admission is $3 per person or $10 per car. For details, call 410-586-8501 or visit