Before we lived on Cape Cod year-round, I wondered what it was like here in the winter-time. I used to think that after Labor Day, the Cape must be a ghost town. I imagined tumbleweeds of sea grass rolling down the empty streets of Hyannis, all the shops boarded up tight. I can remember asking a Centerville friend, “Is there any traffic at all here after Labor Day?” He looked at me with gentle frustration, having heard this question too many times before and said, “There really isn’t that much difference. There are still lots of people around.”
Of course, even though Hyannis continues to bustle all year-round and the rest of the Cape stays very busy during the “shoulder seasons,” Cape Cod’s natural world is very different in the winter time. In some ways, I like it even better then, when we walk the beaches alone, reveling in boundless expanses of sea and sky, streaked with icy silver in the low winter light. The cranberry bogs freeze sometimes and when we go skating, we can see next summer’s bushes branching beneath our feet.
During the holiday season, every town comes alive with Jolly Jaunts or Holly Days. At Centerville’s Christmas Stroll, parents and their children wait by the hour in a long line to see Santa Claus, a very merry man who gives every single child a stuffed animal. My husband and I have worked as Santa’s elves the last couple of years, putting treasures into eager hands. All along the village’s Main Street, volunteers roast sausages, serve hot chowder, make music, and spread a lot of cheer. It is always a magical time.
This issue is full of holiday enjoyment for all our readers. Find gift ideas Cape-wide, like the beautifully wrought, intricate kaleidoscopes created at Mashpee Common’s Cape Kaleidoscope, the elegant glimmering Cape Cod Christmas trees created by West Barnstable’s Pastiche of Cape Cod, or the array of new books at the Provincetown Art Association and Museum. And if you’re looking to make your own gifts this Christmas, savor the sweet cranberry treat recipes cooked by Judy Shortsleeve, our publisher’s wife.
Cape Cod’s natural wonders may look different this time of year. But the people here during our winter season—in the villages, behind shop counters, holding the hands of Santa’s children—are the same. Wherever you are, over the bridge or beside us on a village street, we hope your spirit is warmed by this Cape Cod Life. All of us wish you a merry holiday season and a Happy New Year!
Best wishes,Susan Dewey, Associate Publisher & Editor, 508 419-7381, ext. 19, firstname.lastname@example.org
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- Posted in Philanthropy