Thankfully, we made it through the Labor Day Holiday Weekend without any catastrophic weather in coastal Delaware. Once again, we were spared from any significant damage, a trend we hope will continue well into the future.

As we’ve been promising you now for some time, this week marks the beginning of the fall festival season in southern Delaware, and the next few days feature so many fun things to do, we hardly know where to begin.

There are six fantastic annual events scheduled for this coming weekend in Sussex County, and each and every one of them is something special. We’ve attended all of them in past years and you just simply can't go wrong no matter which festival you plan on attending.

Heck, be adventurous and pop in on more than one of them. It’s probably impossible to get to them all, but two or three is definitely doable while still having plenty of time to enjoy the fun and excitement at each one.

These early September events are spread throughout the county. So no matter where you call home, there should be a great event without just a short drive from your front door.

From sandcastles in Rehoboth Beach, to an arts fair in Bethany, the always colorful Indian powwow in Oak Orchard, a foodie fest in Georgetown and a great community festival in Milford, there are lots of fun, family-friendly events this weekend in southern Delaware.

And this is just the beginning. From now through mid-November, there will be local festivals and events on the calendar each and every weekend. Summer may be over, but the fall festival season keeps things hopping at and near the Delaware beaches until nearly Christmas time.

So get out there and have some fun. “There’s nothing to do today” is not a statement you should hear or utter for several weeks to come.

Now, here are our choices for fun things to do in southern Delaware for the expanded weekend of September 9-12:

Nanticoke Indian Powwow (September 10-11). If you’ve never been to the Nanticoke Indian Powwow in Oak Orchard, then this is your annual chance to do so. Organized by the Nanticoke Indian Tribe, this major fundraiser is a cultural event that features lots of singing and dancing. It’s also a learning experience, allowing the general public a chance to witness the customs and traditions of Delmarva’s native inhabitants. 

Native Americans come from all around the country to participate in this annual event, including artisans who display and sell their handmade goods. Items for sale include jewelry, pottery, moccasins, dream catchers and more. The Nanticoke tribe invites everyone to join them for their annual powwow, but they do ask that outsiders be respectful of their customs and traditions. To learn more about the 2016 Nanticoke Indian Powwow, visit www.nanticokeindians.org.

Take a look at the Grand March from last year's powwow below


Rehoboth Beach Sandcastle Contest (September 9-10). Take the kids to the beach this weekend for the annual Rehoboth Beach Sandcastle Contest, scheduled for this Saturday, Sept. 10, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. This is the 38th year for this popular local tradition, this time held on the beach between Brooklyn Avenue and Hickman Street. The contest is open to both adults and children and sculptures may be started anytime on Saturday, with judging scheduled for 3 p.m. 

Other activities include FREE sand sculpting lessons on Rehoboth Avenue and the Boardwalk on Friday night, Sept. 9, from 5 to 7, as well as the building of a community sculpture all day on Saturday. Children are also invited to create a sand art keepsake on the beach at Brooklyn Avenue on Saturday between 12 and 4 p.m. This event is produced by the Rehoboth Beach-Dewey Beach Chamber of Commerce. Visit www.beach-fun for more information.


Bethany Boardwalk Arts Festival (September 10). The 38th edition of Bethany Beach’s annual arts festival is scheduled for this Saturday, Sept. 10, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the Boardwalk. More than 100 artists will be on hand this year, from locations all around the United States. Jewelry, glass, pottery, watercolor paintings, oil paintings, photography, woodworking and more will be on display in what has to be one of the most beautiful backdrops for an art show in the United States. 

New to the festival this year are the “Meet the Artist” cocktail party, featuring popular local photographer Kevin Fleming, and a self-guided arts and antiques tour. The silent auction also returns on the bandstand from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., with proceeds benefitting local elementary schools. For more information on the Bethany Boardwalk Arts Festival, visit www.bethanybeachartsfestival.com.

It's grown a lot since 2009, but watch the video below and you'll get the idea :)


Riverwalk Freedom Festival (September 9-10). Plan a trip to downtown Milford this weekend for the 2016 Riverwalk Freedom Festival, scheduled for Friday evening and all day Saturday until 4 p.m. Activities include a car show, a first responders tug-of-war, a duck dash, a patriotic pet parade, a lip sync contest and an expanded food court. In sticking with the patriotic theme of the day, all current members of the military, as well as veterans, will receive FREE meals at the food court. For more information on this annual event in Milford, visit www.milfordchamber.com.



Farmer & Foodie Festival (September 13). This sixth annual event is planned for next Tuesday, Sept. 13, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on The Circle in Georgetown. While this isn’t technically a weekend event, it is a great fall festival and we wanted to include it here in our “Weekender Blog.” The idea of this annual event is to create awareness of local food, food products and culinary talent in southern Delaware. Vendors for the event are limited to farmers, producers and artisans selling homemade products only. This event has grown in recent years and drew more than 1,500 visitors last year. To learn more about the 2016 Farmer & Foodie Festival, visit the Georgetown Chamber of Commerce’s website. 

Woodland Ferry Festival (September 10). This quaint festival on the shores of the Nanticoke River near Seaford isn’t classified as one of the larger fall festivals in southern Delaware. But if you’re in the mood for a small, down home event that features great food and local arts and crafts vendors, while learning about the colorful past of this historic ferry, then the Woodland Ferry Festival awaits you this Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. 

One of the most enjoyable traditions at this annual event is the “Battle of the Bands” between Seaford and Laurel High Schools. The bands play on the ferry as it travels back and forth between the two communities throughout the day. The ferry, named after long-time Delaware State Rep. Tina Fallon, is closed to vehicle traffic during the festival but will be transporting guests across the river throughout the day. To learn more about this fun local festival in western Sussex County, call Festival Coordinator Linda Allen at 302-629-5659.

Movie Night on the Beach (September 9). Now that the summer season has wrapped up and the kids are back in school, the Monday night movies on the beach in Bethany have moved to Friday nights. Movies still begin at approximately 8:30 p.m. on the beach at Garfield Parkway. This week’s movie is “National Treasure.” 

The movies on the beach program for Dewey Beach has concluded for 2016.

Whatever you choose to do this weekend, we hope you have a fun and exciting few days here at the Delaware beaches.

And be sure to check back here next week in our “Weekender Blog” for more great happenings in and near coastal Delaware.

Have a great weekend everyone!

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