Tumbleweed Tuesday in the Hamptons
For as long as I can remember, the Tuesday after Labor Day has been proclaimed Tumbleweed Tuesday. This has been the case in most of the Northeast seaside towns and villages, from Cape Cod to the Jersey Shore.
Twenty-five years ago the streets were all but deserted, there were very few cars parked along Main Street and most of the pedestrians wandering about were locals. Storefronts ran their final sales of the season and with inventory exhausted they rolled down their shutters awaiting the spring season. Restaurants trimmed their hours, ran specials, had Saturday tables available and announced the day they would soon close for the season.
One of our favorite Eastenders has a bit to say about the end of summer, Jimmy actually wrote a list of ‘Hot Summer Tips’ – essential activities for the final days of the season. That Jimmy would be Jimmy Buffett – our local surfer and musician – often seen performing live for East End charities of all kinds.
The over-abundance of the summer crowds has departed with tail lights shimmering along headed west on Route 27. As we enter the first days of Autumn, East Hampton magically transforms back to the New England Village that is barely visible in the summer season.
The East End’s perfect time of the year has just begun: Hello September – we were waiting for you to arrive!
- Parking is abundant in town and at the beach
- Reservations for dinner are easy to make and often unnecessary
- Tickets for live music and the theatre are almost always available
- Almost all the village stores and restaurants are still open and wonderfully uncrowded
You might even see that previously mentioned sale sign in a window or two, not to worry, the shops are just making way for the Winter merchandise. Christmas shopping is right around the corner!
So Tumbleweed Tuesday is no longer about this beachfront village closing for the season, but more about the significance of seaside community becoming much more like its origins. The feeling is like that of the intimate home town where the locals were born and raised. By the way, ask nicely and they will welcome you home and share their special place in time.
Make it a Special Autumn Day
A morning walk on an ocean beach will be uncrowded, the waves will crash and the seagulls will squawk for their breakfast. What you will not see are many people, most likely you will see a Humpback Whale or a school of Bottlenose Dolphins swimming offshore. Parking permits and dog restrictions have faded with the end of summer.
- Why not order an MHI breakfast sandwich and a cup of coffee to travel? Peruse Sylvia’s Ocean Beach Guide and plan a morning walk.
- Whatever your choice of camera, iPhone or Leica, you will be able to capture some of the best photographs of the season.
- When you get warm and cozy on the beach, a book or two might be in order – stop by Book Hampton and you will receive a great recommendations for beach reading.
- Inn-Siders Tip – bring a cooler, beach chairs, beach blankets and towels from The Mill House Inn.
After leaving the beach I would suggest a stop at L&W Market in Bridgehampton. Jason’s food is amazing and they will be happy to set up the perfect picnic lunch for you. If your thirst is peaked why not stop at one of the South Fork Vineyards? Get a case to take home and a bottle or two for lunch or by the fireplace in your suite.
Now, on to the bay beaches; with their calm warm waters, they will entice you to take a swim. Perfect for bringing the dog, the whole family and a picnic on the beach. Pick the perfect spot and the sunset over Gardiners Bay is amazing.
When the traffic has departed, especially midweek, bicycling on the East End is at its very best. Please do have a look at Sylvia’s Guide on riding out East. Or, maybe a walk to the Cedar Point Lighthouse – before the hurricane of ’38 it was an island. Here is the rest of the story at the Smithsonian.
Just because it’s Autumn
- Events at Amber Waves Farm – the market is always worth a visit – buy some pancake flour
- Jackson Pollock House Exhibitions – You might like to watch the movie Pollock in your suite as a refresher
- A Ghost Town Walk at the Grace Estate – Find out why it’s called a Ghost Town
- The Haunted Rodgers Mansion – The Paranormal & Frankenstein are on the menu
- Take a ride to Montauk for a cocktail and the sunset at the Montauket
And of course our local Farms are at their best
- Hanks Pumpkin Town – McIntosh, Cortland, Fuji, and Honeycrisp apples, Donuts, Cider, Roasted Corn and The Maze – Bring the Kids!
- Mecox Bay Dairy – Artisanal Cheeses, Grass Fed Beef, Raw Milk, Pork. Everything sold here is made here!
- The Milk Pail – Apples, Fall Vegetables, Flowers. The Halsey family has been farming here for 350 years!
- Fairview Farms – Pies, Flowers, Vegetables, and more. Plus a statement I just love: If you need product when we’re closed, email or call us and we’ll be happy to serve you as best we can!
- Balsam Farms – Close to the Inn and oh so wonderful: We love what we do and we could not do it without your support!
Cajun fora little something extra
Tumbleweed Tuesday by Shotgun Wedding
- A song about this blog, maybe. Let me know what you think.
- Dans Papers covers Shotgun Wedding at Stephen Talkhouse
- A little more about the band Shotgun Wedding
The Last Lobster Roll of the season – and it’s not fair if you go to a seafood restaurant that’s open all year. It’s the seasonality of the challenge that makes it fun.
So post a pic on Instagram, mention us and the MHI Lobster Roll Challenge and whoever eats the very LAST lobster roll of 2019 wins an extra night at MHI added to their next stay!
Inn-Siders Tip – The Clam Bar stays open until the pipes freeze!
A few Links to help with your quest . . .
- An Insider’s Guide
- Hamptons Best Lobster Rolls
- 10 Best Lobster Rolls
- South Fork Lobster Rolls
- East End Eats – Rockin’ the Roll
‘In the months of September and October, as the city-folk return to their unendingly fast-paced city-life and their concrete world, we are relaxing on empty beaches, enjoying warm waters, warm days, and cool nights.’
Claudia Ward on Tumbleweed Tuesday
Thanks for the sentiment Claudia. In my book, Tumbleweed Tuesday is just the beginning of another season, a very special time of year Out East.