Care about the Island’s future? Next weekend there will be a fun way to help shape it: the Island’s third annual Living Local Harvest Festival.

It opens next Friday evening, Oct. 2, at 7:30 p.m. with a panel discussion, The Next Generation of Martha’s Vineyard, at the Grange Hall in West Tisbury. The idea is to get talking about how to keep the community vibrant and our environment as we like it. Island elders Steve Ewing and Kerry Scott will put the hard questions to the next generation, represented on the panel by Jeanette Vanderhoop, Chris Fischer, Myles Thurlow and Katy Carroll. Bring your own bottled-up thoughts and ideas.

The festival continues from 9 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 3, when an opening ceremony with the Black Brook Singers kicks off a full program of free community events, all about sustainable living on the Vineyard — local food production, marine life, renewable energy, resource conservation and Island waste management. It runs until 3 p.m. at the Ag Hall in West Tisbury.

There will be forums on wind power, small scale meat production, waste management and the Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head’s environmental education program. There will be interactive demonstrations on beekeeping, composting, organic gardening basics, fishing for your dinner and preserving food, and there will be educational activities for kids on the culture and history of the Island, farming, pumpkin carving, worm boxes, felt making and more.

It’ll be a day-long farmers’ market, with farmers from both the West Tisbury and Down Island markets, a hay bale maze, cider pressing, goat shearing, pie eating contest and, of course, the Antique Power Show.

The festival concludes with a Slow Food-modeled potluck from 6 to 8 p.m. Bring a dish that feeds six and your own plate and utensils. For details, visit