A few weeks ago we began preparing our gardens for planting. When we bought the inn the areas where the gardens presently are were very over grown with brush and weeds. The area nearest the back door and kitchen was cleared first so we could plant an herb garden. We use the fresh mint in many of our fruit dishes and our herbs compliment various different egg dishes. This year we dug up the rosemary plant as it began to get woody. It was time to start a new on.
If only I could get the rosemary to grow the way it does in CA where my kids live. They use it as a hedge.
I always use Mothers Day weekend as my guide for planting. Chances of a frost are pretty rare and even if one was predicted I could always throw some sheets on the less hardy plants. Last year our new addition to the garden was eggplant. Eggplant become my new zucchini. We had more eggplant than we knew what to do with. Our zucchini unfortunately did not do at all well the last two years. We decided to remove it from the garden and make use of the old bath tub that was in the Chart Room. It made for a great planter. Now that the herbs and vegetable garden are close to complete I’m anxious to get all the flowers in the ground.
Maggie and the New Fleet
We are pleased to announce that we have just taken delivery of eight, brand new bicycles. As you can see from the photo, Maggie is pretty excited about them, too! Some of you might not be aware of the fact that there are extensive biking opportunities on the Cape. The Cape Cod Rail Trail (which can be accessed just one mile from the Old Manse Inn) is a 22 mile Cape Cod viewing experience. This paved trail with well-marked automobile crossings, runs through the towns of Dennis, Harwich, Brewster, Orleans, Eastham and Wellfleet. Along the way there are many places where you can leave the trail to enjoy a picnic or just relax. You can stop to visit the National Seashore or the Salt Pond Visitors Center which features displays of the whaling and salt works industries, and exhibits of many Cape Cod artifacts. Food and water are readily available, and public restrooms can be found at Nickerson State Park, Salt Pond Visitors Center at Cape Cod National Seashore and at the National Seashore Headquarters.
The Cape Cod Rail Trail follows a former railroad line established in 1848 by the Old Colony Railroad. Before these tracks were laid, the Cape was only accessible by packet boat or stagecoach. The tracks originally connected Boston to Sandwich and as time when on it expanded and connected Boston to Provincetown – making the tip of the Cape a very short, 5 hour, trip from Boston. As the railroad grew, so did the popularity of the Cape as a tourist destination and the rail line transported visitors from New York, Connecticut and other parts of Massachusetts. Alas, as the automobile became more popular and easier to afford, and bridges were constructed to connect the Cape to the main land, the railroad lost its importance. Trains continued to haul freight until the mid-1960s when the rails were torn up and the old station houses were razed. But the beauty of the landscape it dissected can still be enjoyed on the bike trail.
All of us know how hectic life can get. We scurry around in our cars chauffeuring the kids to soccer and music lessons, shopping and running errands, often never taking the time to notice what is going on right outside the windows of our car. Next time you come to visit, let us help you plan a day on the bike trail where you can take the time to smell the salt air and delight in the simple things we have come to love about this little spit of land we call home.
For a detailed view of the Cape Cod Rail Trail, please visit: http://www.mass.gov/dcr/parks/trails/print/ccrt.pdf
Hope to see you soon!
Karen and Rich Keevers
Karen and Rich with the Birthday Boy
Sometimes a bed and breakfast is more than just a cozy place to spend the night and grab a bite to eat in the morning. Sometimes it is a venue that brings folks together for a memorable event.
I am very, very lucky. My sister and brother-in-law own one of the best bed and breakfasts on Cape Cod. Okay, I might be a bit prejudiced –but what better place for a party! So, when we needed a place to assemble our family and friends to celebrate my husband’s 70th birthday, the Old Manse Inn was our first choice. Since our family and friends are scattered around the country, it isn’t often that you can find an excuse to pull them all together for a weekend. In the riotous melee that ensued, full of children and relatives and friends who had not seen each other in a while, we managed a fairly well-organized, catered (thank God!) weekend of fun activities and catching up. My husband reconnected with a first cousin that he had not seen in 60 years! Our two grandchildren were often found helping out in the kitchen and were absolutely adorable when they served breakfast on Sunday morning while their grandfather took over the kitchen and cooked for everyone.
The wonderful thing about the Cape is that there is something there for everyone. Our tribe was, at any given time, strewn all over the area taking in the sights, shopping, enjoying the parks or just hanging out together and catching up. The Inn is well suited for such a crowd, and the weather cooperated allowing folks to spill out onto the front and back patios, ride bikes, play golf and just explore. It is an easy walk to the library, General Store or the beach. The Cape is home to many wonderful, reliable caterers, and the Inn’s kitchen lends itself well to cooking for a crowd. We had no trouble enlisting the services of a wonderful, local caterer and another terrific Cape Cod resident, and phenomenal baker, made us two, beautiful birthday cakes.
All in all, everyone had a wonderful time, including the two innkeepers. This isn’t the first family event the Inn has hosted – my nephew got married there two years ago – but each event reminds us how much fun it is to get together as a family and celebrate. I highly recommend you keep the Old Manse Inn in mind the next time you need a place to gather together your friends and family. I know Karen and Rich would love the opportunity to help you plan an unforgettable affair.