Family Fun Month in Cape May

August is here, and the kids have just a few more weeks before they return back to school. Life will be hectic again with the start of a new school year and we recommend one last stop to Cape May before all the craziness begins. This beautiful town can entertain kids of all ages with a variety of activities: from mini-golf, our nationally ranked zoo, to the arcade on the promenade and the best ice-cream shops around. Cape May is a top family destination, and for good reason.



A must stop is the Cape May Zoo. Our acclaimed Zoo is located at 707 U.S. 9 in Cape May Court House and it’s one of the biggest and the best around. The admission, along with the parking, is FREE! This popular attraction has an impressive variety of animals for you to observe and events to enjoy. On Wednesday, August 15 the Zoo hosts a free concert in the park and on Saturday, August 18 you can have a yoga session in the zoo!




You can also stop by at Congress Hall on Monday evenings for their fun Carnival on the Lawn! They have fun games for kids of all ages: face painting, balloon twisting and concessions. You can also take a train ride on their Congress Hall Express.





If the kids are interested in planes, there is a great aviation museum less than a 15 minute drive away. Another fun activity is the Dark Star Pirate Cruises. You get aboard a 50-foot authentic pirate-themed ship and the crew will entertain you with pirate stories, face painting, treasure hunts, water cannon battles and lots of family fun for all ages.




Take a stroll along the Washington Street Mall and try some freshly made fudge at the Fudge Kitchen or go shopping for souvenirs at the stores along the mall. You’ll find unique items that will make great gifts for the loved ones.



You can also visit the Cape May Lighthouse and climb 199 steps to the top.  You will have the best view of the Atlantic Ocean meets the Delaware Bay.



If you really want to experience a piece of history, be sure to check out New Jersey’s Tall Ship, the A.J. Meerwald, moored at the ferry terminal for the month of August. The Meerwald is a 1928 restored oyster schooner, which docks in waterfront cities all over the state. In Cape May, they offer Kid Sails, Sunset sails and other special events during their visit! Take a sail and learn about the history of the ship and if you go, and you’re feeling hardy, you can help raise and lower the sails!



On Thursday nights, catch a movie on the beach. Their lineup is full of classics for kids of all ages.





Another great activity for the entire family is whale and dolphin watching excursions. Get aboard 110-foot boat for a 3-hour tour on the bay and the Atlantic for a great whale and dolphin watching expedition where you can learn so much about the marine life in the ocean and bay.





And If you don’t have a house booked yet, don’t worry – the Homestead Rental Team is here to help you! You can view our inventory HERE, or you can give us a call at 609.884.1888 and one of our agents will be happy to help you.

“Fall for the Fall!” It’s October in Cape May. Here’s why we’re Excited…

Autumn is here in all its glory! As Cape May is located in the Mid-Atlantic region, we are fortunate to experience a very traditional change of seasons. From the sub-tropical summer heat in July to the windswept, frigid beaches of January…Cape May is exposed to a bit everything that Mother Nature has to offer. While weather preferences are typically subjective…it’s hard to deny that October is one of the most gorgeous months of the year here in town. Rarely is it hot and muggy (like the September week we just experienced!)…but it also never gets TOO cold. Nearly every day is full of breezy blue sky, moderate temperatures, and nearly non-existent humidity. In short…it doesn’t get any better for the enjoyment of indoor and outdoor activities. And here in Cape May, there’s LOTS coming up. Let’s take a look…






On Saturday, September 30th, Oktoberfest returns to Cape May’s historic Jackson Street! This perennial event is ALWAYS a favorite for locals and visitors. Touted as the kickoff of fall’s arrival, the festival features food, music, and fun for the entire family. There’s no charge either. So stop by for a few minutes, or wallow away the full day. There’s no better way to welcome this wonderful season of bold colors, crisp air, and of course…pumpkin everything!







Beginning Friday, September 29th through Tuesday, October 3rd, experience the SOMA NewArt Gallery’s final exhibition of its 2017 season. The season will conclude with the finest of work from artists Sam Donovan and Stan Sperlak-a venerable Cape May favorite! The gallery is always a nice place to explore, whether you’re just looking around, or you’re in the market for that perfect piece of original art.







Have you experienced Cape May’s Beach Plum Farm? If not, head over to “Fall at the Farm”. This event begins on Saturday, September 30th and will take place every Saturday through the end of October. There will be live music, hayrides, and of course…the freshest of seasonal goodies. It’s a wonderful way to experience the very best of land and sea right here on Cape Island.







Friday, October 6th through Monday, October 9th, you won’t want to miss Cape May’s 45th Annual Victorian Weekend, presented by the Cape May Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts & Humanities. Victorian weekend is an annual autumn event that places an emphasis on all things historic. Activities include house tours, living history events, workshops, and more. The weekend-long event effortlessly blends education, fun, and relaxation for an experience that is unparalleled and truly unique to Cape May.







In the midst of Victorian Weekend, we encourage you to head on over to West Cape May’s Wilbraham Park on Saturday, October 7th. It’s there that you will find the always popular and proudly quirky West Cape May Lima Bean Festival! West Cape May takes this annual event very seriously, and tedious efforts are put forth to ensure that it’s an experience unlike any other. This is a great opportunity to meet many a Cape May local, and you’ll also have your choice of an astounding variety of recipes, crafts, pottery, and other Lima bean themed products that we guarantee you’ve never laid eyes on. Homestead will also be present at the festival, so please stop by and say hello. You’ll even have a chance to win our coveted Lima bean Beach chair! (The actual chair is pictured above/left). NOTE: In the event of rain, the Lima Bean Fest will be held on Monday, October 9th.







From October 7th through the 31st, be sure to visit “Scarecrow Alley” on the grounds of the Emlen Physick Estate. You’ll have the chance to vote for your favorite homemade scarecrow. And while you’re there, be sure to check out the estate’s spooky Halloween décor, perfectly setting the tone for this most favorite of fun holidays!







Cape May’s Wine and Music Fest will take place on Saturday and Sunday, October 7th and 8th at the Hawk Haven Winery. The festival will feature live music, fine local wines, a variety of delicious food, and even a craft beer garden.







Finally, it just wouldn’t be October in Cape May without some old fashioned Halloween fun! With a fitting beginning of Friday, October 13th, Halloween Happenings in Cape May will continue up to and including Halloween Night. With its rich history, Cape May also has an abundant “haunted history” that’s both exciting and educational. The Cape May MAC does a wonderful job of presenting this history in a fun, whimsical style.







So whether you’re fortunate to be spending a week (or longer) in Cape May this fall, or you’re planning a weekend getaway…there will be something exciting on the horizon throughout the month. Join us in celebrating October-one of our very favorite months-and “fall” for the fall here in Cape May.

As Summer Slowly Fizzles…Here are 4 Types of Cape May Rentals to be Planning NOW…

You can feel it in the heavy air, shorter evenings, and lush overgrowth of many gardens, trees, lawns and shrubbery. Summer is heading towards its finish line. It’s been a wonderful summer here in Cape May. And for many, there are still a few weeks of rest remaining before school begins and autumn activities commence. The reality though is that prime season is winding down. Weekly summer rentals are already heating up for 2018…but they’re just about out of steam for the current year. What does that mean? A few things! For one, now is the time to plan ahead and reserve your 2018 Cape May vacation. And secondly…if you’ve been waiting to plan that impromptu autumn getaway, holiday escape, or tranquil winter weekend…there’s never been a better time to get started. Don’t miss out on the Cape May time you’ve been longing for. Let’s get started in taking a look at the next steps for booking your escape…







First and foremost…there are numerous rental properties with full weeks remaining available. Saturday, August 19th is the LAST week of prime season here in Cape May. Believe it or not, there is still time to book that week if a very last minute rental should come onto your agenda. Please contact Homestead and speak with one of our rental agents directly, as they would be glad to check on availability for you. At this late date…final availability would be subject to each property owner. Moving forward, rates for full week rentals gradually begin to decrease starting with the week of August 26th. And by the time we reach September, MOST properties that are renting through the fall are in a reduced status. September and October are absolutely gorgeous months in Cape May. There is always lots going on, and generally perfect weather. If you’ve missed out on the summer…don’t fret…as the fall is ready to welcome you with warmth, relaxation, and fun!







Next up on the rental agenda…it’s winter rentals. You may have heard this term before and wondered just what it meant. Generally speaking, a winter rental is a long term monthly rental that offers flexibility, value, and convenience if you need or want to stay in Cape May through the entirety of the off-season. The pricing structure for winter rentals is entirely different than it is during the summer resort season. It’s based on a monthly rate that generally falls between about $900 up to about $1500. At times, some utilities are included! Homestead does have a selection of winter rentals that we advertise…but sometimes our property owners will consider a long term, off season rental even if they don’t specifically advertise for one. So if this sort of rental is what you’re looking for…the best way to begin is to select your budget, time frame, and desired monthly rate. Utilizing that information, we can match you to an ideal property for your off season Cape May stay. Experience our town in the golden crispness of the fall and the sparkling serenity of the winter season.








ICape May Beach Sunsetf a long term winter rental is just not practical (or needed) at this time…maybe a short term weekend rental would fit the bill! Weekend rentals are all about fun. Whether you’re going to be in Cape May for a wedding, special event, or just need a getaway…there are plenty of options to suit your needs and budget. Often times the cost of renting an entire home or condominium is LESS than staying in a hotel for the weekend. It also awards you more space, more privacy, and the ability to bring your pet! (to one of our pet friendly rentals). Some upcoming great times to be here in Cape May include Columbus Day weekend (and its accompanying Lima Bean Festival!), Halloween, Thanksgiving, the Christmas Parade, etc.* Again, the best way to plan your weekend rental is to research the properties that interest you, and then contact our rental team to finalize the booking process. Don’t forget to add linens to your rental! In the off season, linen packages for our rentals are offered at a 50% discount for short term reservations.








Lastly, we know this is the time of year when excitement begins to build around the coming of autumn. Therefore, summer of 2018 may seem too far in the future to be of consideration. BUT…if you know that you would like to come to Cape May next summer, and if you know the week(s) that you want to be here….NOW is the time to book! For one, any reservation made between now and December 1st will be placed on a 3 payment schedule for your convenience. And as the dust settles on our re-booking season, this is also the time that availability for 2018 falls into place and the selection of available properties is at its largest. Remember that Homestead does offer Travel Insurance on ALL of our leases. Add the insurance for your early booking to increase your piece of mind should the unexpected occur between now and next year.







Whether you’re a habitual visitor to Cape May, planning to vacation here for the first time, or find yourself required to be here for a special event…Homestead has you covered. Enjoy the remainder of your summer and the coming of autumn. And remember that anytime is a good time to visit Cape May.



*Although we encourage the rental of our properties for accommodations, please remember that rental homes cannot be used as “event homes”, and must be for accommodations only, or small events that adhere to the property occupancy.



Cape May Fall Festivals: Where you’ll want to be this October!

The sun is setting on September 2016. One of the most beautiful months of the year has come and gone, and we’ve officially made a full transition into Fall. The Fall is a polarizing season…but not in a negative way! Many among us are extremely excited for football season while others don’t know or care about the game at all. The same can be said of Halloween; a favorite of many…but for others just a holiday to tolerate (and a good excuse to eat excess candy!). Then there’s the weather; a crispness and clarity that for many is ideal…but of course there are those mourning the loss of blistering beach days and warm, muggy nights. Whatever you think about Fall, one thing safe to say is that it’s a FUN time in Cape May. We welcome October and are excited to tell you about what’s in store this month…so read on to find out more!







Many of Cape May’s September events are perfect for the transitioning of the seasons. However the arrival of October brings a bevy of events tailored to the ultimate autumn lover. This year, October 1st is a Saturday! To celebrate, Cape May is starting the month off right with Oktoberfest on historic Jackson Street. The street will be closed to vehicular traffic and will be transformed into a German promenade! Traditional German food and music will be featured, and artisan crafted goods and collectibles will be available for purchase. There will even be a beer Garden! Jackson Street is THE place to be this Saturday between 10 am and 5 pm, as Oktoberfest is a simply fabulous way to ring in the month. The best part? After spending some time at the festival, just stroll over to the Washington Street Mall or up to the Cape May promenade and continue your weekend wandering. From shopping to dinging to just plain sightseeing…there’s always something to explore.

vineyard-1051683_960_720Despite our excitement about the imminent Oktoberfest, we’re also willing to admit that it does fall into the category of polarizing events that might not be everyone’s “thing”. So if you’re in search of a more subtle afternoon but are still thirsting for some exploring, check out the Cape May Wine Trail. You’ll start the event with lunch at The Carriage House Cafe and Tearoom (located at the Emlen Physick Estate), then it’s all aboard the trolley for stops at Willow Creek Winery, Hawk Haven Vineyard & Winery, and Natali Vineyards. The cost is $75 per person and includes lunch, wine tastings at each location, and a wine tasting glass! Two out of the three wineries to be visited are located offshore, so a perk of this event is that it’s also a chance to see a bit of “off-island” Cape May county…just another way of exploring like a local. We should also mention that while at the Physick Estate, you’ll certainly want to check out the Autumn Festival Crafts and Collectibles show-featuring the works of crafters from throughout the region.




As we move through October we will be met with Victorian weekend on the 8th,fallpond3
9th, and 10th. This is one of Cape May’s most popular weekends of the year! It’s a celebration of the town’s Victorian roots, and an ideal time to relax and bask in the beauty of fall. Coinciding with Victorian weekend is the venerable West Cape May Lima Bean festival in Wilbraham Park. The
unique festival has long been a favorite of locals and visitors alike. In fact, many enjoy the tradition of escaping to Cape May each year for this one of a kind event. It begins at 9 am and runs until 5 pm. There will be recipes, crafts, and entertainment all centered around the Lima bean! And yes, speaking of polarizing…we’re aware that Lima beans are either loved or loathed. But trust us, even if Lima beans aren’t at all pleasing to your palate, you’ll still enjoy yourself at this lively event-as it’s truly a fun time for all ages. Homestead will be present as well…so please stop by and see us. Look for the Homestead tent!






An additional event that begins on Saturday, October 8th (and continues each week until 11/5) is the Fall Festival at Beach Plum Farm. The lovely Beach Plum Farm (in West Cape may just near the Willow Creek Winery) will feature seasonal fresh foods, craft beer from the Cape May Brewery, hayrides, and much more! You can also just relax and stroll around the breathtaking 62 acre farm-all the while forgetting that the Ocean is mere minutes away. It’s like being in the country and at the beach simultaneously-and nothing much sounds better than that!



While most of Cape May’s major events (including those listed above) take place on weekends from now through the winter season, weekdays in October still find many local establishments open for business. If you’re able to explore Cape May during the week at this time of year, it’s a great time to get acquainted with the local population. Business owners and local employees are often able to entertain general conversation and conduct more personalized, old fashioned service. We recommend a Thursday through Sunday/Monday stay at this time of the year. You’ll experience the tranquil pace of the late week followed by the bustle and buzz of an autumn weekend-truly the best of both worlds here in Cape May.



DSCN1085In addition to long weekend rentals, Homestead is witnessing a continued rental momentum even as we move into October! Numerous homes are nearly booked solid for the 2017 season. If you traditionally wait until after the holidays to book your Cape May vacation, you may want to consider moving the timetable forward a bit. We still expect a sizable rental inventory to be available as we move into the winter…but if you’re very specific about your rental property location and/or features, the time to reserve is NOW! Homestead is open year round from 9 am thru 5 pm everyday except Sunday. Give us a call or stop by and see us. We’d love to help you find your dream rental in Cape May!



We hope everyone has a wonderful weekend and is as excited about October as we are! But even if you’re not, we encourage you to try and find something about the fall season that you love. And if you’re here in Cape May, the search for that something will certainly not prove to be a challenge.

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