Serene views, cherished traditions

This is the third installment of a new series exploring the vibrant harbors across Cape Cod and the Islands

On the southwestern coast of Bourne, Red Brook Harbor is tucked between two peninsulas. Stretched-out Wings Neck is to the north, and bulbous Scraggy Neck is to the south. The harbor is further protected by Bassetts Island, a barrier beach shaped like a capital letter T tipped over 90 degrees to the right.

“This is a nice stopover,” says Bruce Parker, owner of Parker’s Boat Yard, a family-run, full-service yacht yard located on Red Brook Harbor Road in Cataumet. “It’s easy to get into and it’s well protected. The harbor is large and deep, and we have the barrier island—not a lot of harbors have that—so you don’t get a lot of wave action.” But don’t let the calm waters and the slow pace of life in the village of Cataumet trick you into thinking that Red Brook Harbor is a sleepy place.

“There are 700 boats in the water within a mile of here in the summer,” says Scott Zeien, owner of Kingman Yacht Center, a full-service marina, as he looks out on the harbor from his second-floor desk and enjoys what might be the best view from any office on the Cape.

“By car, it’s not on the way to any place, but it’s centrally located if you’re coming by boat. You can leave the harbor and go left and be in Woods Hole or Martha’s Vineyard within an hour. If you go right, you can be in Cape Cod Bay in 75 minutes. And Cuttyhunk and Newport are also within easy range,” Zeien says.

More than a safe port for boaters going up and down the coast, the harbor attracts lots of day trippers from the south coast who anchor off Bassetts Island for picnics and swimming. “It’s open to anyone who can get here,” says Zeien.

Another big draw, no matter how you get to the harbor, is the Chart Room on Shipyard Lane, a restaurant and piano bar located within Kingman Yacht Center’s finger piers. The Chart Room is housed in a former barge that was used as a machine shop for Army and Navy vessels during the Korean War. It was converted into a restaurant by the Kingman family in 1966, and current owner David Jarvis Jr.’s late father, David “Jasper” Jarvis, took over the business in 1972.

Red Brook Harbor

Aerial view of Kingman Yacht Center (middle) and Parker’s Boat Yard (top right).