We recently heard the news that there will be no Scallop Festival in 2018. The threat of inclement weather is a disaster for the SF, which suffered mightily in attendance and may I dare say performance last year as a tropical storm lurked nearby. It is tough to postpone things involving pre-purchased mass scallop orders, and no one in their right mind would go to the Week Old Scallop Festival. It’s probably more than that, but it’s what I have as we go to press.
The Festival ditched Buzzards Bay, which had been a loving host with big crowds and awful infrastructure, going to the Cape Cod Fairgrounds on-Cape.
Even residents of Bourne who agreed with the Festival’s reason for leaving still viewed her departure as a slap in the face. Bourne has always been Cape Cod’s weak sister, and here was yet another indignity thrust upon us. “Oh, we’re not even good enough for the Scallop Festival?”
There was talk around Bourne of sabotaging the Scallop Festival once it left town. Schedule an OysterFest or Lobster Roll Championsip on the same day as the Scallop Fest, then purchase 20 junker cars and have them all break down on the bridges/at strategic rotaries during the time people would be heading on-Cape for scallops. Put up a sign reading “MASHPEE: 20 MILES, 475 MINUTES” right about on Routes 3 and 25 where a man could say “Eff Scallops,” and instead bring the famn damily to Buzzards Bay for the Million Clam March or whatever event that we had cobbled together.
Thankfully, it never came to that… but you can understand how a town that bears every other town’s summer traffic might want to roll dirty when they take our Scallops away.
No metaphor that I can come up with for this 2018 scallop void is pretty. The Festival is very much like a loose spouse, who left a perfectly good relationship in search of greener pastures. She’s a fortune hunter, and it’s tough not to enjoy a snicker when Spouse 2.0 kicks her to the curb with her hat in her greedy little hands.
Bourne, a cuckold of a town, would probably take her back. Not a lot of events are throwing themselves at the B, and at least she knows how we like our shellfish. We would never really forget that she left us, but she came back, so she must love us. Right?
Eff her, and eff scallops. Let her peddle her scamp ass to Barnstable or New Bedford. Nobody wants Sloppy Seconds, and this would actually be Sloppy Thirds. There would be little consolation to the fact that we had her first when someone else had her second. Scallops are dead to us.
However, there are many different sorts of festivals. Buzzards Bay has a nice park, and we can do what we can with our rotten Main Street business district. Here are a few ideas, some already mentioned in the previous paragraphs.
The Million Clam March
A cutesy play on the more serious Nation Of Islam protest march, we serve up steamers and chowder and quahogs and anything in a shell.
I don’t know what we would pull in attendance, but if we got half of the 50,000 people that the Scallop Festival drew, that would be like 40 clams per person to get the Million Clam mark.
I propose running the Million Clam March until one million clams are consumed, even if we have to run it until Wednesday.
This would be the same festival as the one with the scallops, just with a less popular bivalve.
Oysters do have a reputation as an aphrodisiac, and we shall play on that. The big deal here is that we tie it in with all of the hotels in the area, who would offer packages for couples. We have a big new hotel going in right near Buzzards Bay Park, and those rooms won’t fill themselves.
Properly done, Bourne could be the spot of conception for a million future children if the festival succeeds.
Lobster Fight Championships
I’m not sure if this is legal… but lobsters fight all the time in the tank, right? It’s not like we’re making them do it. Zoom a camera in, broadcast on a big screen, accept betting and drop two big hungry lobsters in one small tank. Two lobbies enter, one lobby leaves… the winner moves on, the loser goes in the lobster roll. The eventual tournament winner is released or sent to an aquarium as a celebrity, his choice.
I’m pretty sure this would get us some national media attention, although it may not all be favorable.
I realize that it’s January 14th, but honestly look me in the eye and tell me that you have something better to do next October 22nd or whenever.
Jump The Shark Festival
This also is most likely afoul of the law, as they say. It involves catching a Great White Shark in the Canal, luring him into an underwater pen, and then charging rich people piles of money to jump it on water skis off the back of a cigarette boat while we have a big party in the park.
I would not be above bringing ESPN in, and getting this set up as an event in the X Games. It would also give the band Great White something to do, as they have seemed a little down since that whole Station fiasco. I’m sure that whoever sings Mack The Knife could use a weekend’s pay by this point, too.
We should move on this fast, while Henry Winkler is still alive and can serve as Grand Marshall.
It’s not like we’re mistreating the shark, who would get to eat anyone who actually got into his pen and disturbed him… we’re just jumping him.
The Irish Riviera Festival
Bourne isn’t mentioned in most definitions of the Irish Riviera, as we are under the 30% Irish population levels that you see in the true Scituate/Weymouth parts of the Riviera. However, we have enough Irish to stake a claim, and none of the South Shore towns are having an Irish Riviera festival. Bourne would be 100% Irish Riviera if we hosted the Irish Riviera Festival every year.
This could very much turn Buzzards Bay into a battleground, as 50,000 Irish descend into the village for a weekend of power drinking.
That stuff we always joke about happening at the Cape Verdean Festival that actually doesn’t happen? It would actually happen at the Irish Riviera Festival.
This is also a reminder to the rest of the Cape that, should the disrespeck continue, we are perfectly capable of working with the South Shore.
Scusset Beach just sits there, useless, from October through May. Why not get it making us some money?
Dump 10 stories of sand in one end of the parking lot, buy a few snow guns, coat the hill with fake snow, and charge people to park/sled/rent sleds. We instantly become the region’s sledding Mecca. It’s what whoever owns Water Wizz should be doing, but that’s Wareham’s problem.
Every kid has a sled in the house somewhere. We don’t get snow all that often. When we do get it, it is often dangerous or uncomfortable to go out in it. Sleds are often wasted on southern New England kids, especially on the coast. That won’t be the case with Sled Mountain.
Why the hell not?
Best part? At the end of Sled Season, we push all the sand into the Canal and make it wash over to Sandwich, where it would fill in spots hurt by winter storm beach erosion. It would help make up for all the sand that the Scusset Beach jetty blocks from washing over there naturally.
Everybody wins, year-round.