Words: Terry Vandewater
Photos: John Doble

The Cape Cod Scallop Fest is back for its 48th year of family fun, live entertainment, local arts and crafts, and of course—the mollusk of the weekend—our own beloved scallop. Born from the actions of a few Buzzards Bay fishermen to promote and support the local community, the Scallop Fest has burgeoned into an annual event drawing thousands of fans, from “regulars” across the country to local denizens across Southeastern Massachusetts. Each year, more than three tons (yes, three tons!) of native scallops are deep fried to perfection, reveling in their gold star status, making the excursion to the Cape well worth the drive over the Sagamore or Bourne bridge.

Voted as one of Cape Cod’s best festivals, the Scallop Fest has something for everyone! Its famous fried scallop and herb-roasted chicken dinners (prepared by J&J Concessions, owned by Lakeville’s Roger and Hope Pinard) are a huge draw, as is the live music and entertainment performed throughout the day on two different stages.

A trip to The Scallop Fest offers more than just scallops—a plentiful food court includes a beer and wine garden, raw bar, chowder, and lobster, as well as hot dogs, burgers, wraps, salads, and of course, fried dough—there is a plethora of edible options to sate every palate. Adding to the festivities are the newer (and competitive) Corn Hole Tournament and the popular antique and classic car shows.

The Scallop Fest is the Cape Cod Canal Chamber of Commerce’s largest fundraiser; monies help to fund local scholarships, community venues, and help feed the hungry. A true community event, the festival relies on a large number of sponsors, vendors, the Barnstable County’s Sheriff ‘s Office, Scallop Fest organizers, and 500 volunteers to make the weekend a huge success for the 30,000 visitors, and thus the local economy as well.

This year, the weekend kicks off on Friday night with Boston comedian Lenny Clarke. So, save the dates and celebrate the autumnal equinox at the 48th Annual Cape Cod Scallop Fest. It’s time to cross the bridge and get your scallop on!

Terry Vandewater will travel to ends of the earth for tasty scallops. Luckily, this fall, she’ll only have to go OTB to eat some of the best scallops on the planet.


September 22, 23, & 24, 2017

Cape Cod Scallop Fest – rain or shine

Friday and Saturday
September 22, 23, 2017, 11:00 am to 11:00 pm
Sunday, September 24, 2017, 11:00 am to 6:00 pm

Cape Cod Fairgrounds
1220 Nathan Ellis Highway
East Falmouth, MA 02536