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Harbor LIFE: Wellfleet

Sunset over Wellfleet Harbor

Sunset over Wellfleet Harbor. Photo by Stephanie Ponte

Commercial Street and Kendrick Avenue meet at a corner across from the pier. At 15 Kendrick Avenue, the former home of the Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theater (WHAT) is now home to the Harbor Stage Company. The company’s mission is “to preserve and promote the legacy of challenging live performance on the Outer Cape”—their appropriate tagline describes it as “a theater by the sea that’s right on the edge.”

Another doorway in the building takes you to Ceraldi, where chef Michael Ceraldi serves a seven-course prix fixe dinner using local ingredients, some of them from an on-site garden. One recent entrée was halibut with wild ramp chimichurri, chlorophyll broth and Silverbrook Farm asparagus. The interior décor is as unique as the menu—the light fixtures, for example, were made from old metal clam baskets.

Wander down Kendrick Avenue to Mayo Beach. At low tide you can watch the oyster farmers hard at work. The town has 150 wild commercial harvesters and 134 oyster grant holders, and there is no greater place to unwrap a “Rollwich,” the iconic sandwich from the Box Lunch, first established in Wellfleet in 1977.

The Bookstore & Restaurant is just across from Mayo Beach, so a seat on one of the outside porches is the place to be. The lunch menu includes Portuguese stew (mussels, scallops, calamari, linguica and a spicy red sauce served over linguini) and a baked cod, scallops and seafood medley.

The bookstore part of the business is on the back left of the building. Explore the narrow aisles and you’ll find an array of used novels and nonfiction titles, along with an impressive collection of old comic books and celebrity magazines, as a well as a shelf of books by Cape Cod novelist Joseph Lincoln.

On the backside of the building is the entrance to the subterranean Bomb Shelter Pub, a popular local watering hole. Next to the Bookstore & Restaurant is a recreational complex with a skateboard park, pickleball and tennis courts and the Baker’s Field tent, where free performances of Shakespeare captivate audiences of all ages during the summer.

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