Rain or Shine: Ptown Indoors

Ptown Rain


Ok, so we haven’t had that many rainy days this summer-too few, honestly.  But they are bound to arrive eventually.  They always do.  The Cape is an outdoor, sunshiny kind of place.  We do outside really well.  Rainy days?  Inside?  Well, rainy days are a challenge.  So, if the weather outside is frightful (frightfully hot or frightfully wet¾either way) there are some indoor places in Ptown that are definitely worth checking out-as an excuse to escape the rain, or perhaps, to enjoy some a/c for an hour or two!


Provincetown Public Library

Housed in a former church, the library is a cultural center for the 21st century featuring programs and speakers, a robust archive and art collection, and a half-scale fishing schooner (the Rosa Dorothea) inside the library (in the children’s room).  If you can’t be outside on a boat, might as well be inside, right?  356 Commercial Street, 508-487-7094.


Provincetown Art Association and Museum

PAAM is your local, neighborhood art museum that just happens to show national caliber contemporary art.  Right now, I’m excited to see the new exhibition of Boston photographer David Hilliard.  In their exhibitions, PAAM usually strikes a nice balance between the imported and the homegrown.  Since it’s Ptown, there is plenty to pick from.  General admission: $10, free on Fridays after 5pm.  460 Commercial Street, 508-487-1750.


Waters Edge Cinema

Waters Edge Cinema is the home of the Provincetown Film Society (that sponsors the Provincetown International Film Festival every year).  The theater offers a range of films from the mainstream to the indie, including local filmmakers, international art films and more.  237 Commercial Street, 2nd floor, 508-413-9369.

PTown is for (Bird) Lovers!

Piping Plover

Summer is here, the sun is shining, and…it’s bear week!  So, it’s a great time to get outside and enjoy nature!  Come to think of it, does anyone really stay indoors in Ptown anyways, if so, who are these strange people?  The bears are, of course, plentiful this time of year and can be found on the beaches, in the water, even walking down Commercial Street!  It may be a challenge to pull yourself away from the fabulous tiki drinks constantly flowing by the pool at the Shipwreck Lounge.  But if you need a breather from downtown and feathered sky friends are more your style (you get giddy and geek out over terns, plovers, and Wilson’s Storm Petrels, for example), here’s how to see em:

Hike to Race Point Lighthouse

Recently, Race Point has had some of the best birding on the Cape and no wonder.  Located at the very tip of the peninsula and jutting out straight into the Ocean, it is an ideal stopping point for birds on the move.

The old Ptown Fire Road (about 4 miles total), off Province Lands Rd, is not only the best way to get to the Lighthouse (WAY easier than hauling through the sand), it is also a good birding trail.  Plovers are earlier in the season.  Right now, it’s tern season.  Many other bird species, of all shapes and sizes have been sighted.  You’ll want to choose a non-windy day and, as all birders know, get out there early for the most variety.  July marks the tail end of tick season and the mosquitoes are out this time of year, so if you go, pants may be the most practical option, along with a generous helping of bug spray.

Pelagic Birding Trips

When you’ve gotten your fill of shore birds, Seasalt Charters offers four-hour Pelagic birding/ photography trips in July, August, and September, complete with an onboard naturalist.  Shearwaters, Jaegers, Wilson’s Storm Petrels, Northern Gannets—an offshore boat charter offers a chance to see rare marine birds up close.  The birding is also amazing out on whale watching trips to Stellwagen Bank.  I have heard that volunteers for the Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary are often aboard the whale watch boats to do bird counts.  It’s a perk of volunteering: you get a free trip on the boat.

If you are looking for advice and updates on the Cape Cod birding scene, you’ll definitely want to check out the Weekly Bird Report on WCAI, the local NPR station.  Mark Faherty, Science Coordinator at Mass Audubon’s Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary, posts a new report every Wednesday, but you can stream or read online here.

Best Cape Cod Day Trips

road trip

Let’s be honest, Provincetown is just about as out of the way as it gets (arguably one of its best attributes) which means it may not be the best home base for exploring the Cape.  Nevertheless, there is much to see and do beyond the town limits.  If this is your first time to Cape Cod and/or Massachusetts, it is definitely worth the wander.  Every town is different and beautiful in its own way and the contrast with Provincetown will be striking.


The closest option.  Wellfleet has some of the most amazing beaches and hikes.  Great Island (a state park), actually a peninsula jutting out into Wellfleet Bay, is one of my favorite spots on the entire Cape.  The town has galleries, restaurants, a working harbor, not to mention the drive-in, a weekly flea market on Saturdays, and arguably the best seafood bisque on the Cape (courtesy of PJ’s).  Stop at PB Boulangerie, right on Route 6, and pick up a loaf of their bacon bread (only if you like bacon, of course).


Chatham is charming, quaint, and picturesque.  It has its lighthouses and beaches but most folks hit Main Street for the shopping and restaurants.  For the more adventurous, a ferry ride to Monomoy Nature Wildlife Refuge offers great birding, walking, and seal viewing.

The Islands

Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard are their own little worlds.  Each is worth a visit.  Nantucket, the smaller of the two, is a little more bustling in its own downtown and has excellent shopping and restaurants.  Oh yes, and it’s got the cobble stone streets, the whaling museum, the history and the whole Moby Dick thing, if that’s your style.  Martha’s Vineyard, larger, more sprawling, is a bit more varied in the contrast between the towns such as Vineyard Haven and Oak Bluffs and the rest of the island, which is quite rural and bucolic.  A bike is a great mode of exploration and transportation for both islands.  There are plenty of ferry options, departing from Hyannis, Harwich, and Woods Hole.  Which one you choose depends on your destination and the time you want to spend in car versus on boat.


If you arrived in Ptown without checking out Beantown, then you may want to carve out a day for New England’s “big city.”  It is an easy ferry ride away and they run daily.  The best thing about Boston is that it is entirely walkable (assuming that you enjoy some vigorous walking).  Boston does history well, with its meandering, mismatched streets, antique buildings squished in between the newer high-rises and the Freedom Trail, which follows the steps of the American Revolution.  I personally go for the world-class museums such as the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Museum of Science, and the New England Aquarium.  Dotted with antique shops and boutiques, Beacon Hill’s Charles Street is one of my favorites for window shopping and walking.  And of course, there’s Cambridge, on the other side of the Charles River¾a city of its own with great restaurants, shops, and its own supply of world-class museums at Harvard University and MIT.

My Favorite Commercial Street Shopping Spots

Brass Key Guesthouse

Commercial Stereet1

If you are a first time visitor to Ptown, Commercial Street is a must-see.  In terms of originality, variety, and beauty, it also offers some of the best shopping on the Cape.  From the upscale and classy to the raucous and rambunctious, there is literally something for everyone.

Where to start?  The scope of this blog isn’t long enough to capture the all of the delicious offerings on sale in Provincetown.  So I will stick to some of my favorites.

Roots Home

This eclectic shop has a vintage, mid-century modern vibe in its offerings of everything from art to home décor, furniture, rugs, and jewelry.  Plenty of color and sunshine here¾a great spot to pick up a beachy, Cape Cod themed gift.

193 Commercial Street, 508-487-2500.



This is a go-to for locally themed, great looking t-shirts, sweatshirts, and the like.  Even the locals sport them.

208 Commercial St, 917-626-4052.


Kiss and Makeup

Shopping should be a treat and this little gem of a shop takes those words to heart.   There’s a balance of well-known and hard to find skincare, makeup, and bath products for both men and women.  Great products, delightful treatments, what’s not to love?

357 Commercial St, 508-413-9337.


Yates & Kennedy

A dash of Dickens and a sprinkle of Melville!  As a modern day cabinet of curiosities, Yates & Kennedy is a must for a good, healthy dose of the 19th century.  Owner Mitch Yates’ exquisite taste is on display in everything from antique taxidermy, leather goods, and custom screen-printed t-shirts.  Eccentric.  Quirky.  Covetable.

368 Commercial St, 508-487-4400.


Henry & Company

This is the place to find your next bag/pair of sneakers/hoodie that you’ll wear for months.   You know, the one that everyone will be asking you about when you get back home?  This shop specializes in basic, beautiful casual wear for men.  Or the women who borrow their clothes.

210 Commercial St, 508-487-6215

DeadZone Zombie Tag

Zombie Tag Banner

David Flower Productions
New live interactive gaming experience!
If you are looking for something different to do in Provincetown on a
Friday or Saturday night, try DeadZone Zombie Tag. Everyone wears
a cool high-tech LED device that interacts at a 3-foot distance and the
area of play is spread throughout the center of town. It’s hide-and-seek
on the cutting edge, a scavenger hunt after the apocalypse, and
an escape room without the walls.
There are two ways to play. You can play as a human, scurry around
town while you solve the puzzles, collect the data, avoid the zombies,
and be a winner. Or, you can be a merciless zombie, hunt down the
humans, infect as many as you can, and prevent them from
completing their mission. There are clues, maps, recovery centers,
safety bunkers, and guaranteed excitement!
The game runs every Friday and Saturday night from June 17 to
September 3, 7:30-9:30 pm. It’s a great partner or family
activity. Sign up as a group or form teams ad hoc with other players
you meet at Headquarters, 330 Commercial Street, where the game
starts. Reserve your spot online at
Brought to you by David Flower Productions, a local business that
has been synonymous with quality events since 2001.

Provincetown By Boat: Kayaks, Schooners, and Whales—Oh my!

DSC_0053 (2)

You may have noticed that Provincetown has a lot of…water.  Not the fresh water stuff¾although we’ve got that too.  I’m talking salty stuff.  Jutting out into the Atlantic Ocean at the end of a peninsula pretty much guarantees that you are surrounded by it.  Ptown has fabulous beaches and a bustling main shopping district well within feet of the ocean.  You can walk to see lighthouses; you can visit the harbor and pier.  But by far the most memorable way to really experience the ocean is to get out into it!  Unless you arrived with your own water bound mode of transportation, you may need a little help.  Here are some of our favorite ways to immerse yourself in Ptown’s great big blue.

#1 Whale Watch

Whales are amazing creatures.  Best seen in person.  There’s only one way to do it: by boat.  Ptown has several different options, from small, boutique boats to larger, ferry trips.  There are dog-friendly options too.  Just be sure to bring warm clothes¾no matter how hot it is onshore, it’s always cooler out on the water.

#2 Sail Aboard a Wooden Schooner

Want to experience what it feels like on a 100-year-old wooden sailing vessel?  I’ll answer for you: yes, you do.  The Hindu, originally built in 1925 as a pleasure yacht, will always be one of my personal favorites (we spent the afternoon of our wedding on it) but there are others too.  There’s a reason these sailboats never retire.  A leisurely sail around Provincetown Harbor is magical and soothing—just about as timeless as it gets.  Plus, today, in the 21st century, the boats are cleaner, rodent-free, and only go out on nice weather!

#3 Kayaking & Stand-up Paddling (SUP)

Whether on your own or as part of a tour, a kayak ride or a paddle around Ptown’s waters offers exercise and scenic beauty, all in one.  No need to lug your own kayak or board all the way out here.  Provincetown Aquasports, located conveniently on Commercial Street, provides rentals, lessons, and tours.  Provincetown Harbor is the safest place for a paddle, as it is on Cape Cod Bay and has calm waters and currents.  For the more adventurous, a paddle out to Race Point offers some of the best whale watching in the U.S. (just make sure you keep your distance¾it is illegal to get within 200 yards of a whale).  Time of year matters for catching the whales¾spring is the best time to see them inshore.  To be sure, the Center for Coastal Studies usually posts recent sightings on its Facebook page.

Provincetown By Bike

Biking on the Beach at Sunst in Oceanside - November 2, 2012

Provincetown’s unmistakable landscape has a wonderful way of transforming even the most reluctant city slicker into a veritable outdoors person. Who can resist those crazy dunes, the classic lighthouses, and the mesmerizing sunrises and sunsets? Despite the fact that many windows in Ptown offer a glimpse of the ocean, it’s still nice to get beyond the village to enjoy Mother Nature to the fullest. Ptown offers plenty of flat roads and trails for casual biking. Just be sure to avoid Route 6 as it has no bike lane and no safe shoulder to ride on. For cyclists of all levels, here are two of our favorite rides:

1) Province Lands Bike trail

The Province Lands is part of the Cape Cod National Seashore. For the history buffs out there, the land was originally set aside as a fisheries reserve in the 1600s by the Plymouth Bay Colony. The Cape’s early colonists were keenly aware of the importance of protecting their marine resources. It’s a hilly loop a little over 5 miles, with another 2 more miles of extensions to be added (Herring Cove Beach, Race Point Beach, Bennett Pond). This trail winds through the otherworldly dunescape of the Outer Cape. You can easily bike from town or park your car at the Province Lands Visitor Center. Maps are available at the trailhead.

2) Cape Cod Rail Trail: The Cape Cod Rail Trail (CCRT) is a 25 mile, paved bike trail built over a 19th century rail line. Stretching from Dennis to Wellfleet, it’s the best way to see many of the Cape’s towns, with plenty of places to stop for snacks, shopping, swimming, etc. It’s fairly flat and a family-friendly ride. For those staying in Ptown, it’ll be a little bit of a drive to get to it.

Here are some additional resources for our cycle-minded visitors:

1) Cape Cod Bike Guide (www.capecodbikeguide.com): Easy website with an extensive list of trails/paths (including directions) and bike shops.

2) Ptown Bikes (www.ptownbikes.com): Full-service bike shop on Bradford Street just west of the Brass Key

3) Gale Force Bikes (http://www.galeforcebikes.com/): Full-service bike shop in Ptown with rentals, sales, and repairs. Also offers a convenience store to stock of up sandwiches and drinks. Conveniently located just off the Herring Cove Beach extension of the Province Lands Bike Trail.

4) The Bike Shack (www.provincetownbikeshack.com) Located on Shank Painter street headed into town, it offers biker rentals, repairs, sales, and service.

5) Arnold’s Bike Shop (http://provincetownbikes.com/): Another of Ptown’s full-service bike shop located on Commercial Street, also offers rentals, sales, and repairs.

6)  Provincetown Bike Rentals (http://www.provincetownbikerentals.com/): Provincetown’s newest bike rental store.

Summers Hottest Events In Provincetown


It is still the off-season here in Provincetown, but already glimmers of activity are beginning to show as more and more folks arrive and businesses awaken after their annual winter hibernation. While we are busy opening the storm windows, repainting the deck furniture and waiting for the temperatures to break into the 60s, it seems like an ideal time to daydream about the fun-filled summer still to come.

May to August, the P-town social calendar is packed. With so much going on, you essentially can’t go wrong with when you visit. Here are some of this season’s highlights that we are looking forward to!


Monumental Yard Sale    May 20-22   Ptown.org

The yard sale to end all yard sales, stretching up and down Commercial Street and at residences throughout the town. Who knows what treasures are awaiting discovery!

Single Women’s Weekend

May 21-24   www.ProvincetownForWomen.com

Unsatisfied and fed up with your typical dating routine? Get your single self to Ptown! Featuring speed meeting, dance parties, wine tastings, entertainment, and more.


Cabaret Fest  June 2-5  www.CabaretFest2016.com,

Now in its 15th year, CabaretFest celebrates the master songsmith Cole Porter. With performances every day, parties, and master classes, this is a must-see for every Broadway buff! Happening concurrently is the Women of Color and Friends Weekend, www.ProvincetownForWomen.com


Provincetown International Film Festival

June 15-19  www.PtownFilmFest.org

As one of the country’s top film festivals, the PIFF seeks out a diverse array of films and prides itself on supporting edgy and innovative work. This year’s festival honors director Ang Lee.

Provincetown Portuguese Festival & Blessing of the Fleet

June 23-26   www.ProvincetownPortugueseFestival.com

A weekend long celebration honoring the Ptown’s heritage as a haven for Portuguese migrants and as a hub of maritime activity. Features food, a parade, and the Sunday ceremony to bless and protect Ptown’s fishing fleet.


July 1 – 7  Independance Week

The parade and fireworks on July 4th are the icing on the cake during this week of raucous revelry. If you love a good party, this will fit the bill.

Bear Week in Provincetown

July 9-17   www.ptownbears.org

And the party continues as thousands of bears from all over the globe descend upon Ptown. The vibe is friendly, happy, and loving. No matter how you take your tea, Bear Week has your flavor. Party, dance, chill, relax, you can do it all.

Girl Splash

July 19-23    www.girl-splash.com

A great excuse for a girls’ weekend, featuring an all-star comedy line-up, dance parties, whale watches, and more. Don’t miss “Girl Splash IDOL,” the ultimate karaoke contest on Wednesday night.

21st Annual Family Week

July 23-30   www.familyequality.org/familyweek/

Family Week is the largest annual gathering of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer-identified parents and their families in the world. The 2016 fun-filled Week will include more opportunities than ever to build community and to get empowered on today’s issues.


August 11  Ptown Jazz Festival

August 13-19   Carnival Week “Back to the 80’s”

Carnival is one of the largest outdoor celebrations in Massachusetts. We get in on the action too with our annual “Boys Just Want To Have Fun” pool party. Get your tickets in advance cause it sells out!



Brass Key Hotel poolLooking to do a long weekend on the Cape mid-April to early May, and not sure what area to choose as our ‘base”, then Provincetown is the best place to spend this spring. I know you might have doubts in mind and want convincing reasons. Don’t worry, in this article we will address the top Irresistible attractions that are in Provincetown.
Put on your seat belt while I analyze them categorically:

First Attraction: The Cape Cod National Seashore:

This is the main national site of attraction and unarguably the best. It is one of the high ranking beaches which exist in Cape Cod and it’s indeed a treasure. Spanning an area of over 40,000 acres of the waterfront, historic buildings, old lighthouses, picnic areas, nature trails, swimming beaches and of course can be found along this beautiful piece of natural shoreline.
Ascending from the national seashore where it begins in Provincetown to the end adjacent Chatham, there are six beautiful beaches to explore. Eastham’s Coast Guard Beach is one of the most beautiful beaches on Cape Cod hands down. Eastham is also home sick Light Beach. Wellfleet Marconi Beach, Truro’s Meadow Beach and Provincetown Herring Cove and Race Point beaches are all on the national seashore.
I’m not sure what kind of historical and cultural things you have in mind, but I assure that you got a lot to enjoy on the Cape Cod National Park.
Second attraction: Exotic accommodations and great dining experience.

When it comes to world-class accommodation, Provincetown sit there staring at the top to you, the accommodations are so charming to the point of not wanting to return home. A perfect hypothesis of such hotels and accommodation suites is Brass Key Hotel (why not book accommodation before spring begins on our website www.brasskey.com) with an incredible stay, great staff and a wonderful site that will satisfy your taste hip and chic to elegance and antique. And not to forget the twin Crowne Pointe Historic Inn & Spa, the interior uniformly compliments the spectacular Provincetown landscape of dunes, marsh grass, blue-green waters and sandy possession. Natural materials with fine craftsmanship abound throughout the hotel, including hardwood floors, soothing wall colors and gently rotating ceiling fans. Did I mention the historicity of the Crowne Pointe Historic Inn & Spa in Provincetown? Forgive me! It’s a classic 140-year old Cape Cod Sea Captain’s good. This Provincetown hotel consists of 40 rooms and is located in six major architecturally restored historic buildings. Incredible, is it not? Yes of course.

Amazing Dining Experiences:
 Want some memorable dinners this spring? Then Provincetown is the best place for you.
Remember to check out THE POINTE RESTAURANT + wine bar (visit the website to see www.dineptown.com for salivating menus); located in the Crowne Pointe Historic Inn & Spa, offers modern-coastal cuisine with a strong local undercurrent Pointe in an innovative restaurant and wine bar which channels the creativity of Provincetown. This inspired spirit, lively atmosphere, and focus on bringing guests and neighborhood local’s unprecedented food and beverage menu makes it unique amidst Provincetown restaurant scene. We also have Mews Restaurant, Jimmy’s Hideaway, Red Inn Restaurant, Bayside Betsy’s Restaurant and many other breathtaking dining centers, so you nearly would not want to return home after this spring visit to Provincetown.

Third attraction: Best Whale Watching In the World

Provincetown whale watches are an adventure that will serve as lifetime memory, in fact, you wouldn’t forget the spectacular experience in a hurry! Sightings are guaranteed during your trip to Stellwagen Bank’s, nice to see the world’s largest mammals. You will be glad when you see the great whales of the North Atlantic: the humpback, Finback, Minke, Law and Pilot whales. Dolphins, porpoises and seals are common sightings too. Our experienced crew makes an excellent educational tutor for the entire family. They are very knowledgeable about whales and wildlife, as well as local history of Provincetown. Our ships provide maximum visibility and comfort. Enjoy the cruise on the open deck or lounge in the air-conditioned cab. Your comfort is assured with complete kitchen equipment service offering food and your favorite drinks. Your captain and crew bring you a first-class on-the-water experience.
Art Galleries In Provincetown:

The business territory is filled with galleries (at least forty of them) and is very dynamic in the months of summer; these galleries, you can create a variety of fine art from local artists, but also national and international ones to find. Do not miss the art openings every Friday, the ideal opportunity to meet the artists, possibly the host and directors – in a more convenient style with a glass of wine in hand.
We have galleries, including:

1. Packard Gallery
Two artists, Anne and Cynthia Packard have artwork on display here, and this is a wonderful gallery for so many reasons.

1. The unique styles of the duo- Anne and Cynthia
2. The actual building in which the gallery is housed – beautiful.
3. With the Enlarge attractive display that you can just feel contented watching from a distance.
4. Also visible is the Wheaton terrier snoozing at the entrance which is soft coated.

2. Simie Maryles Gallery

An artist-owned gallery represents traditional art with a contemporary point of view. A small group of selected representative painters from across the country, styles ranging from classical to Renaissance painterly impressionistic graphic design fun.

3. Tom Johnson Photo Gallery
At Whaler’s Wharf a stunning photo gallery, to amazing scenes from Provincetown, the local landscapes and seascapes, lighthouses, whales and enjoy the Cape Cod National Seashore. It might also make a perfect souvenir home.

4. Berta Walker Gallery.

5. Julie Heller Gallery.
Just to name a few.

Fourth Attraction: Topnotch pet friendly cities.


One of the friendliest pet resorts can be found in Provincetown. A good example is the Provincetown Pet Resort & Supply. Co-owned by Tom Walter, David Sanford and Kenneth Masi, these owners all love what they do. Along with Provincetown consistently named as one of the top where pets are cities in the country, there is a real need for luxury pet accommodations. And that is why at Provincetown Pet Resort & Supply, our goal was an element of luxury accommodations for pets, as they bring their health and safety is our primary concern, “said Tom Walter.”
Vacation activities for your dogs do not stop at just a stay in a luxury hotel for pets: if you prefer to keep them with you in your apartment or guesthouse, you can take them to the resort for the dog equivalent of day camp. “We offer doggie with both indoor and outdoor playgrounds, dogs constantly supervised by trained personnel that separates them by size and temperament. In fact, check out breathtaking features of the pet resort.”

Fifth Attraction: World Class Spa.
Provincetown also has a world class Spa, the Shui Spa; our elegant spa offers guests a peaceful setting with unisex full service treatment rooms, staffed with highly trained, licensed therapists. In the center of Shui Spa is a warm mineral therapy tub in a relaxing understated meditative environment. The entire spa is intimate and unisex and facilities include a lounge and a sauna and steam room. The spa also has a finishing area for manicures and pedicures, as well as a retail environment for you to take home your spa experience.


With all these attractive and breathtaking features of Provincetown MA, no doubt you are convinced of where to spend this spring. Well, I will repeat the fact that you should not forget to rejuvenate your body and senses at Shui Spa, Provincetown, and Cape Cod.

You may want to check out our website at (www.shuispa.com)