Toys, a horse race, a film fest & Santas: 13 top things to do on Cape Cod May 6-13 (2022)

Kathi Scrizzi Driscoll|Cape Cod Times

This is opening weekend for both the 2022 season at the Atwood Museum run by the Chatham Historical Society, and for the new Cape Cod Toy Library, which has hundreds of toys and books to lend to local families.

Taking a break after the busy season, Santa's helpers will converge on the Mid-Cape for their annual gathering, with visits and photos available. On Martha's Vineyard, this is the weekend for the annual LBGTQ+-focused Spectrum Film Festival, with virtual options for those who can't get to the island.

Other highlights this week include a Kentucky Derby party, a Mindfulness Festival, talks on Wampanoag traditions and local shorebirds, a Scrimshaw Discovery Day, the opening of a labyrinth, a Kim Moberg concert, a virtual talk by author Lisa Scottoline, and two chances to see thought-provoking photos by Julia Cumes,

Atwood Museum opens new exhibits for 2022 season

The Atwood Museum, home of the Chatham Historical Society, will reopen Friday for the 2022 season showcasingits permanent exhibits and three new ones: “Clubs of Chatham: A Century of Summer Leisure,” about five of the town’s oldest summer clubs; “Weird, Wacky, Wonderful: Curiosities from the Collection”; and “Alice Stallknecht: American Regionalist: Beyond the Murals,” focusing on the artist’s lesser-known works, including a weathervane series, and exploringher life, influences and legacy. The museum continues with virtual events, too, including Brian Harrington speaking May 10on “Changes in Chatham & Orleans Migratory Shorebirds.”

When: Starting 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday and Saturday; talk at 5 p.m. Tuesday, May 10

Where: Atwood Museum, 347 Stage Harbor Road, Chatham; talk online

Admission:to the museum, $10, $5 for ages 8-18, free for members and age 7 and under; talk $10, free for members

Reservations (recommended) and information:

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LGBTQ+ stories at center of film festival

The Martha’s Vineyard Film Center will host the sixth annual three-day Spectrum Film Festival, presenting what it says is “LGBTQ+ stories, people, and issues through a variety of films that includes comedies, love stories, and documentaries from around the globe.” All seven films will be shown at the center in Vineyard Haven, but four will also be available to watch online from anywhere Friday through Sunday. Films that can be seen both ways include “Sublet,” starring John Benjamin Hickey in a romance about a New York Times travel columnist in Tel Aviv, and “Family in Transition,” a documentary about a father of four who reveals to his family that he’s a transgender woman.

When: Friday through Sunday

Where: Online and at the Martha’s Vineyard Film Center, 79 Beach Road, Vineyard Haven

Tickets and information on all seven films:

Cumes photos part of South Yarmouth exhibit, Falmouth talk

Images captured by photographer Julia Cumes can be seen through both a virtual talk about her trip to the Ukraine border and other countries presented by Falmouth Arts Center, and in a current exhibit at the Cultural Center of Cape Cod in South Yarmouth related to gender identity. On display at the center through May 21 is “Trans(formation): A Collaborative Portrait Series Exploring Gender Identity in our Cape Cod Community,” with all portraits telling the story of the subject’s journey in a way to “confront viewers with the expressive power and diversity of human gender identity and ask them to reexamine their assumptions.”

On Tuesday, May 10, Cumes (a former Cape Cod Times intern) will give a virtual talk about and show photos from her recent Ukraine border trip and other travels in “Uncommon Journeys: Exploring Culture and Place Through Photography.” Cumes, who is juror for the art center exhibit’s photography show on display through May 30, will also discuss and show projects in India, Rwanda, Thailand, Tanzania, Cuba and more.

When and where: “Trans(formation)” exhibit through May 21 at the Cultural Center of Cape Cod, 307 Old Main St., South Yarmouth; “Uncommon Journeys” talk at 6 p.m. Tuesday via Zoom

Cost: no admission to the exhibit; for talk, $15, $12 for members

Information (and talk registration):, 508-394-7100 for exhibit;, 508-540-3304 for talk

Visit with Santa in May

Close to 100 Santas, Mrs. Clauses and elves are due to be on the Cape this weekend for the North East Santa Gathering, which will include a few possible opportunities for kids to get an off-season visit. On Saturday, photo-taking and visits, along with a raffle and vendors, will be available in the vendor room at the Aiden by Best Western @ Cape Pointe in West Yarmouth for a donation to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital. Some Santas will also be on a scenic train on Saturday and whale watch Sunday, where other guests can get photos taken, too.

When and where: open time for photos and visits 9 to 11 a.m. and 2 to 5 p.m. Saturday on the second floor of the Aiden by Best Western @ Cape Point, 476 Route 28, West Yarmouth

Additional visits: On the noon to 2 p.m. Cape Cod Central Railroad trip; on the 11 a.m. Sunday Hyannis Whale Watchers Cruise from Barnstable


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Maritime museum to spotlight scrimshaw exhibit

Cape Cod Maritime Museum will hold Scrimshaw Discovery Day on Friday to show off its collection, which officials say was put togetherover 10 years by Elizabeth and William Graham to become the largest private collection of scrimshaw displayed on the Cape. The itemsincludecarvings on ivory, whale teeth, bone, baleen, and other material used by sailors as a way to pass the long months at sea. Discovery Day will include activities, a talk and information on the unusual art form and local whaling history.

When: Friday; 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., children’s craft activities; 3 p.m. lecture about endangered whales from Brian Sharp from the Marine Mammal Rescue Program at the International Fund for Animal Welfare

Where: Cape Cod Maritime Museum, 135 South St., Hyannis

Admission: $10, $8 for students and seniors, $5 for age 4-5, free for age 3 and under and active military


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Toy lending library opens

The Cape Cod Toy Library will have thegrand opening of its lending program with a Special Family Play Day on Saturdayoffering play materials for families to explore, create and build with. There will be play spaces and materials for ages from infants to tweens. There will be a ribbon-cutting and a raffle for prizes for those who purchase subscriptions.The lending library has a collection of 1,500 toys and 350 resource books for families to reserve and borrow based on interests and development needs.

When: 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday (ribbon-cutting at 10:15 a.m.)

Where: Cape Cod Toy Library, 1663 Main St. (Route 6A), West Barnstable (in back of the First Lutheran Church)

Information:; for borrowing, (families can reserve for curbside pick-up)

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Awareness Project to present the Mindfulness Arts Festival

The Awareness Project will hold a Mindfulness Arts Festival on Saturday that will include three short plays, two short films, and a presentation by artist, author and healer Suzanne Faith entitled “The Magic of Flowers.” There will also be meditation sits and mindful movement sessions, with several local holistic healing and wellness vendors on hand.

When: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday

Where: Cultural Center of Cape Cod, 307 Old Main St., South Yarmouth

Admission: Pay what you can, with suggested donation of $10


Experts explain Wampanoag traditions around herring run

Kitty Hendricks-Miller, Wampanoag Indian education coordinator, and Dale Oakley, assistant director of the Wampanoag Natural Resources Department, will give a presentation on the celebration of the spring herring run — when the fish return from the Atlantic Ocean to streams and rivers to spawn; Wampanoag New Year and its traditions; and on what is being done to preserve the vital herring population. The river herring arealso an important traditional food source for the Wampanoag, known as the People of the First Light.

When: 2:30 to 4 p.m. Saturday

Where: Highfield Hall & Gardens, 56 Highfield Drive, Falmouth

Cost: $5-$10

Information and reservations:

Meetinghouse Farm celebrates new labyrinth

Meetinghouse Farm in West Barnstable will hold a "Love Our Labyrinth" benefitto show off the new woodland stone walking path of concentric circles that is open for exploring, but also to raise funds for the landscaping still needed. There will be tours, music, drinks, appetizers and more.

When: 4 to 5 p.m. Saturday

Where: Meetinghouse Farm, 2135 Meetinghouse Way (Route 149), West Barnstable

Tickets: $50

Reservations and information:

On stage:

Cheer on the run for the roses in Cotuit

Cotuit Center for the Arts will bring back its annual Kentucky Derby Gala in person, combining one of its most successful fundraisers with fancy hats, contests and mint juleps. There will be live betting games, a hat parade and contest, entertainment, and the horse race broadcast live at about 6:30 p.m. on the center’s 26-foot movie screen. There will be raffles, games and a silent auction. The 2019 gala sold out and raised nearly $8,000 for the center.

When: 4:30 p.m. Saturday

Where: Cotuit Center for the Arts, 4404 Falmouth Road (Route 28)

Tickets: $40, $30 for members

Information and reservations: or 508-428-0669, ext. 0

Moberg and Swanson team up for cultural center concert

Singer-songwriter Kim Moberg and violinist Heather Swanson will perform in concert featuring Moberg’s original music — described as “songs that tell stories about family, love, loss and tales that have been passed down from generation to generation.” Moberg was born in Alaska, the daughter of a classical pianist mother of Alaskan Native Tlingit descent and a U.S. Coast Guard veteran father from Kansas. While she played music as a teen, it wasn’t until 2014 that she overcame her stage fright and wrote her first song. She has since won awards and is now recording a third album after "Above Ground” and “Up Around The Bend” received worldwide airplay. Swanson is a classical violinist who crossed over to folk and traditional Celtic music and a music educator with a 2019 CD titled “Beside Quiet Waters.”

When: 3 p.m. Sunday

Where: Cultural Center of Cape Cod, 307 Old Main St., South Yarmouth

Tickets: $20

Reservations and information:

Best-selling author to talk about historical novel

Falmouth Jewish Congregation, with Worcester JCC, will host a free, virtual Jewish Book Council Talk by best-selling and Edgar Award-winning author Lisa Scottoline on her historical novel “Eternal,” set in interwar Italy. Described as “a sweeping historical epic fueled by devastating true events,” this is another Scottoline novel that explores themes of family, justice and love, this time between three friends and their families as Mussolini and the Nazis take power and anti-Semitism spreads. Scottoline has written 33 novels and been published in 35 countries.

When: 7 p.m. Thursday, May 12

Where: Via Zoom and ) and broadcast live on FCTV Public Channel 13

Admission: Free

Registration and information:

Contact Kathi Scrizzi Driscoll at Follow on Twitter: @KathiSDCCT.

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