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Cap Cod off the beaten path for kids - does such a thing exist?

Cap Cod off the beaten path for kids - does such a thing exist?

Old May 8th, 2008, 07:52 AM
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Cap Cod off the beaten path for kids - does such a thing exist?

Hi,

Is there an "off the beaten path for kids" in Cap Cod?

Anything counts: From little known activities for rainy days - such as small shops in which you can do porcelaine painting to animal shelters where you can give a hand for a few hours.

For example, in York (Maine) there's a little-known zoo and amusement park called York Wild Kingdom.

Really, any interesting idea counts!

thanks!
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Old May 8th, 2008, 08:47 AM
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Although we don't visit the Cape I have friends who live there. You might google 4-H to see if you can get an event schedule. In some counties/states 4-H holds training sessions or mini fairs so kids can learn how to show their animals. In our area we also held simple craft activities in which anyone could participate. Check for local Audubon activities. Many times you have to get there to check thru the local newspaper for community events or read a calendar at the local library. Our local library has a summer reading/craft program. Many summer theaters have plays for children during the day. You can find decorative painting supplies at Barn and Barrel in Harwich, Hattie D's in West Dennis.
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Old May 8th, 2008, 10:04 AM
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Wow! thaks for the great ideas.

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Old May 8th, 2008, 12:06 PM
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If your kids like baseball and (I assume) you will be there in the summer, there is an amateur baseball league (Cape Cod League) with teams in various towns. You can get a schedule from the Chamber of Commerce. It's a great way to spend a summer evening - bring a blanket and enjoy a real classic experience. There's no set admission charge - they pass around a cup for donations. The players are all college stars and many go on to play in the majors.
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Old May 8th, 2008, 12:52 PM
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You don't mention the ages of your kids, but if they are younger, the Thornton W Burgess mmuseum and nature center in Sandwich would be fun. http://www.thorntonburgess.org/Museum.ht

Check his children's books (he invented Peter Rabbit) out of the library and become familiar with them before you come this summer.

There is also an old car museum in
Sandwich and glassblowing.

Older kids might enjoy the battleship USS Massachusetts, well off-Cape in Fall River, but only about 40 minutes from the bridges. Their mom might enjoy the many outlets.
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Old May 8th, 2008, 01:56 PM
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Not sure there really is an off the beaten path - but there are some things that are less publicized. When it rains, everything except the beach on the Cape is mobbed - so on those days everything is on the beaten path.

(FYI - in New England, York animal park is very advertised and known).

I would forget volunteering anywhere for a few hours as a drop-in - with tightened security, criminal record checks, etc, most places want to clear you as a volunteer and want you to go thru some sort of orientation and training.

Things that might be of interest -

Cape Cod Rail bike path

Cape Cod potato chip factory tour

Lake, rather than ocean, swimming. There are lakes I know of in Wellfleet and Dennis - and probably other areas.

Second the vote for Cape Cod baseball - my kids ended up being recruited to pass the donation cup around once at a game, and we did not know anyone there.

Walk the dunes near Provincetown - some are protected at some seasons, so please obey signage.

Near Wellfleet Center there is a footbridge to a tiny island. If you walk to the island in the evening, there are hundreds of little land crabs running around.

Most people who want unpopulated Cape, however, go in the off season.
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Old May 8th, 2008, 02:22 PM
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The Sandwich State Fish Hatchery is open to the public and free. It's located at 164 Rt 6A and fun for kids as you can feed the fish with food from vending machines (bring quarters). It's easy to miss so keep a sharp eye for the gate and small sign on the right side of the road heading east. Good for an hour or so but not in rain as it's all outdoors.
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Old May 8th, 2008, 03:06 PM
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you have some great ideas. There is a booklet, available all over the Cape, entitled "Kids on the Cape". I don't know if they have a website, but you might google it and see.
Every town has so much to offer, for every age group,-above Hallet's in Yarmouthport- and Hallets has the old soda fountain still in use, which is fun- is a small museum featuring the drugstores items of years gone by. On a path, in the same town behind the P.O. is an old Seaman's Chapel.
Walking Great Island, in Wellfleet, (bring H2O)and checking the site where they discovered an old Tavern, used by the whalers in the 18th century. You'll see items found in the small museum in the National Seashore Visitors in Eastham. The rangers there lead many activities for children all summer. several my grandchildren enjoy (ages 7,9 and 12)are the walks at Duck Harbor in Wellfleet, looking for flotsom and jetsam,and the campfire with the stories they tell, every week. And the History of Captain Sam Bellamy, of Whiddah fame,that is told at the amphitheater weekly at the Visitors center. Pick up a schedule-it is chockabloc full of happenings.
The Audubon, also in Wellfleet has programs for kids-and a day camp.There is a childrens theatre in Harwich, and one in Wellfleet, under the tent, during the summer, as well as the weekly square dances.
The Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce site. Much to do!
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Old May 8th, 2008, 05:28 PM
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The Cape Cod Train is fun and you would see things "off the beaten path." www.capetrain.com
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Old May 8th, 2008, 07:19 PM
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Isn't there a children's theater in West Harwich?
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Old May 8th, 2008, 07:58 PM
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I don't remember the town, but we went Candlepin bowling. This is a different type of bowling with a softball sized ball and tall, thin pins. You get 3 chances to knock the pins down and the pins are not picked up during the frame.

It is very hard to make strikes or spares. But it is fun and a good rainy day caivity
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Old May 9th, 2008, 04:29 AM
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Thank you all!

I now almost wish it will rain all week long!

Again, thanks!
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Old May 9th, 2008, 04:42 AM
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Hi,

I know this isn't a rainy day activity, but I would check out the OceanQuest especially if your children are interested in sea life.

oceanquestonline.org

I've never done it, but everyone who I've spoken with who has kids has loved it.

HTH!
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Old May 9th, 2008, 06:21 AM
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Both Hyannis and Orleans have candlepin bowling.
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Old May 9th, 2008, 12:48 PM
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OP - No, you never, ever wish for rain on the Cape in the summer. Traffic is hell, as every parent is looking for something to keep the little darlings busy. Then there is no "off the beaten path" on such days, unless it is the beach. It can take an hour to go a few miles since there are really only a couple of main roads that go east-west on the Cape. There are no secret routes or secret places on the Cape for such times. Everyone tries bowling, movies, and every arcade around. Pray for sun. If you want non-crowds, go to indoor places when the weather is good.
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Old May 9th, 2008, 05:27 PM
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Gail is right about the traffic. My parents used to plan "cape related" activities for me in the cottage we rented (my dad hates the traffic). So, we would make scrap books of our trip, make candles with shells and sand, one year we made pine cone wreaths etc. My mom planned ahead, so if we had sunny days to start we collected things to amuse me on the rainy days.
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Old May 9th, 2008, 05:45 PM
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In Brewster on rte 6A there is a Natural History Museum. There are interesting displays inside and all sorts of activities offered. On a nice day, take the hike beside the marsh, over the dunes and to the beach.
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Old May 15th, 2008, 09:27 AM
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Lots to do in Provincetown:

Many people don't give enough attention to Province Lands visitor center (National Park Service) has terrific activities: http://www.nps.gov/caco. Check the ranger guided activities and films. They do terrific stuff all summer long.

Go to the little Pirate Museum on the pier: http://www.whydah.com/

Some of the more "beaten" path stuff is fabulous for kids:

Pilgrim Monument and Museum:http://www.pilgrim-monument.org/t3/index.php

Take a Dune Ride:
http://www.artsdunetours.com/

And of course don't miss a whale watch:
http://www.whalewatch.com/dolphinfleet/
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Old Oct 4th, 2008, 09:28 AM
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bm
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Old Oct 25th, 2008, 02:36 PM
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We always stop in at Scargo Pottery - on route 6A right by a little beach - maybe called Scargo Lake or Scargo Beach. It's magical, very cool pottery place tucked away in the woods and run by the second and third generation. Fabulous.
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