Springtime Whale Watching in Provincetown

It’s been a cold, cold spring, but as it is now the end of March, the end of the cold, cold weather has got to be coming soon.  While we all do our best to get out in the winter, when that warmer (i.e. above 50 degrees) weather finally does arrive, it is a breath of fresh air-literally-as we all venture outdoors into the sunshine.  It also means it is almost time for us to open our doors.  We will be open for the season in just a couple short weeks!

Spring is a great time to get out into nature and enjoy all that the Outer Cape has to offer.  You’ll likely beat the crowds i.e. there won’t be any.  It also just happens to be THE BEST time of the year to see whales from shore.  The best spot to do it is Race Point Lighthouse, which also happens to be a great hike with a beautiful scenic finish.

Provincetown also happens to have one of the world’s most respected marine research and rescue institutions, the Center for Coastal Studies.  Founded in the 1970s by three Provincetown scientists, the center does an amazingly broad range of programs¾everything from running a sea discovery space for kids, to offering educational programs and films, and conducting research on marine mammals, climate change and a whole host of other issues.

If you are in town this weekend, the Center is sponsoring a free whale walk on Saturday, April 1, 10am.  Jesse Mechling, Director of Education at the Center for Coastal Studies, will be leading a walk along the shore, teaching how to identify the different whale species by their appearance and behavior.  At this time of year it’s possible to watch rare North Atlantic right whales, humpback, fin and minke whales from the beaches of Provincetown.  For more information, click here or visit the Center for Coastal Studies facebook page (where they also post updates on any recent whale sightings).

Provincetown for Art Lovers-Spring Edition

Provincetown’s reputation as a creative destination is well established.  Artists, writers, and performers have been flocking here for well over a century now.  Even in the off-season, there is plenty going on.  For the visual arts lover, there is plenty to see and do this March.

The Fine Arts Work Center (FAWC) is one of the country’s premier artist residency programs for visual artists and writers.  This month, visual arts fellow Victoria-Idongesit Udondian’s work will be on view at FAWC, with an opening reception on Friday, March 17, from 6-8pm.  I recently saw Udondian’s work at the Higgins Art Gallery at Cape Cod Community College.  Working primarily with found clothing and fibers, I’m sure she gets comparisons to Nick Cave all the time.  I loved the way she played with materials and color, for example, using wire to transform a pair of pants into tentacle-like tubes.  Definitely worth a visit this month!

The Provincetown Art Association & Museum (PAAM) has several great shows up at the moment.  The Members’ Juried and Open exhibitions are an ideal way to get a taste of the variety of artworks currently produced in Provincetown and beyond. Check out the watercolors and block prints by Lester Johnson, in a show curated by Christine McCarthy that’s up through the end of the month.  Johnson was an important Provincetown artist who showed actively in the middle of the 20th century.

The galleries (mostly located at the East End of Commercial Street) are quieter this time of year (many are closed) but if you visit on a weekend, there’s still plenty to see. Berta Walker Gallery, Julie Heller Gallery, Rice Polak and Simie Maryles (Saturdays) are all open on the weekends this month.

Provincetown Performances: What to See in Winter

In the summer, Provincetown has some of the best theater around.  Top notch.  Between the Provincetown Theater, Peregrine Theater Ensemble, Provincetown Tennessee Williams Festival, there’s plenty worth watching (and that’s not including Truro or Wellfleet.  But come February, most theater doors around here are locked and the voicemail messages may say something about calling back in June.  Theater-wise, it’s a bit bleak.  But there are some bright spots.  Here are a few performances (some live, some not) worth checking out:

 

Romeo & Juliet at Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theater

Adapted and performed by Psittacus Productions in association with Lincoln Center’s Education Department, this performance features original music and stylized movement in a fresh look at the familiar story.  Runs March 25 through April 9.  For more information and tickets, click here.

 

Sea Change Film Series

On March 18 at 7 pm at the WHAT Theater in Wellfleet, Mass Audubon Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary, WCAI, and WHAT present Wild Ways: Corridors of Life, a documentary featuring some of world’s most cutting edge conservation biology work.  Following the film, David Paulson of Mass Wildlife will discuss the state’s Linking Landscapes program and efforts to accommodate wildlife, especially around major roadways. He’ll be joined by Bob Wilber, director of Land Conservation for Mass Audubon, the largest owner of private conservation land in Massachusetts. WCAI’s Heather Goldstone will moderate the panel.

 

Open Mic Nights

Now in it’s 26th (!!) year, the Coffeehouse @ The Mews is an open mic for writers, playwrights, poets, singers, songwriters, comedians, etc.  It is every Monday night through May 8, 2017 with host and co-founder, singer songwriter Peter Donnelly. You can also listen live, on Mondays, from 7-9:30pm here.

 

Movie Nights

As part of the Film Art Series at Waters Edge Cinema, the Provincetown Film Society presents screenings every Wednesday, 7p.m. of a wide variety of films ranging from 1931’s Le Million (a French film about the journey of a winning lottery ticket) to Popeye (Robin Williams and Shelley Duvall circa 1980) to Nightcrawler (a 2014 psychothriller starring Jake Gyllenhaal).

 

This Winter, Sage Inn & Lounge presents the Crone’s Film Series every Friday, 7p.m. Film historian Michelle Crone presents a different film from 1939, a year she describes as “the greatest year in the history of filmmaking.” Films include The Wizard of Oz (March 3), Wuthering Heights (March 10), and Goodbye Mr. Chips (March 24).