The Beach Times

The 2021 Cape Cod St. Patrick's Day Parade in September
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Tuesday, August 17, 2021

Cape Cod St. Patrick's Day Parade

The St. Patrick's Day Parade is an institution on Cape Cod, as it provides something to look forward to as winter comes to an end. 

It's also a positive for local businesses, giving tourists a reason to visit the Cape before the summer and providing some income before the busy season begins. 

Of course, the Cape Cod St. Patrick's Day Parade always takes place in March on one of the weekends before or after the big day, but 2021 is offering a slightly different experience. 

Because there were CoViD-19-related shutdowns when the real St. Patrick's Day occurred, organizers planned ahead and booked an alternate date. That plan is going forward, so for one year only, Cape Cod residents and visitors will have the opportunity to celebrate the region's St. Patrick's Day Parade while the weather is warm. 

The 2021 edition of this annual event will happen on September 18, 2021, so if you're planning a late-summer visit to the Cape, booking for that weekend makes a lot of sense. 

Here's a look at what you can expect from this year's parade.

The Details

Like every other year, the 2021 Cape Cod St. Patrick's Day Parade will travel on Route 28 in Yarmouth. The parade begins at the intersection of Route 28 and Long Pond Road and extends through downtown to Higgins Crowell Road.

Visitors and locals alike will begin lining Main Street's sidewalks first thing in the morning on Saturday, September 18, and the parade will start sometime around 8:00. 

The 2020 edition of the parade, which took place mere days before Massachusetts entered a lockdown period, attracted between 65,000 and 70,000 people, and there's a good chance we could see similar crowd sizes this year after 18 months without gatherings.

Who's in the Parade

Traditionally, the Cape Cod St. Patrick's Day Parade is dedicated to the area's veterans and first responders. In 2020, a group of veterans drove a Sherman tank through the town's streets, veterans of the Korean War and World War II rode in a trolley, and 100-year-old veteran Freeman Johnson walked the entire two-mile parade route. 

This year's parade is devoted to all the essential workers who kept society functioning during the pandemic. Those being honored include everyone from EMTs, nurses, doctors, police, and firefighters to postal workers, restaurant staff, and grocery store clerks. All essential workers are invited to participate. There will be Clydesdale horses and pipe bands present, too, and there are plans for a flight-over by a Massachusetts State Police helicopter.

Overall, this parade is well worth attending because there's enough going on to keep anyone entertained, and the atmosphere surrounding the event always adds to its allure.

The Impact on Local Businesses

Businesses in Yarmouth and throughout the rest of the Cape were hit hard by the pandemic, and the postponement of the March St. Patrick's Day Parade was yet another setback. Traffic in the community was down by about 90% from the previous March, mainly because the St. Patrick's Day Parade acts as a catalyst for the entire week.

When out-of-town visitors come to the Cape for the parade, they stick around for the entire weekend or longer. As a result, restaurants, bars, and vacation rentals are busier, which is a trend these businesses appreciate. 

Bands and other acts also flock to Yarmouth for the parade and stay for the weekend, playing local bars and creating a festive atmosphere everywhere. 

This parade transforms Yarmouth into a bit of a party zone for the weekend, which is a good thing for these establishments after a long winter.

Visiting For the Parade

As of right now, parade organizers have the green light to go ahead with this event. Of course, the delta variant could cause some issues, but state officials are currently saying the parade is safe to proceed, and visitors can begin planning their accommodation. 

Yarmouth is a fantastic place to book a vacation rental because it features beaches, a bustling downtown, and easy access to other parts of the Cape via Route 28 and the Mid-Cape Highway.

Even if you don't end up booking a vacation rental in Yarmouth, it's easy to reach the community from other Cape towns, so you don't have to miss out on the action. 

Things usually start winding down on Cape Cod after Labor Day as the region begins preparing for the fall and winter. However, 2021 is different because of this late St. Patrick's Day Parade, ensuring visitors have another reason to check out the Cape.

Parade Yarmouth

The Top 5 Ice Cream Shops in Dennis, MA
Posted by Kinlin Grover | Wednesday, August 11, 2021

photo of ice cream

Spending part of your summer on the Cape will undoubtedly lead to lots of time in the sun. Of course, you'll have to cool down, so it's fortunate that Cape Cod is such a hotbed for ice cream shops.

There are tons of ice cream parlors in Dennis, Massachusetts, to the point where selecting a top-five list becomes a bit of a task. The reality is that you can't go wrong with most of these retailers, as they offer all the delicious flavors you could ever want for dessert.

Here's a look at some of the best ice cream shops you'll come across while vacationing in Dennis, MA.

1) Aunties' Ice Cream Parlor

Main Street in Dennis Port is home to Auntie's Ice Cream Parlor, a vintage-themed shop that first opened its doors in 2012.

Stepping into Auntie's is like going back through time to the 1950s, as the staff is decked out in throwback uniforms, and the decor and furniture look like they belong in an old-school diner.

As for the ice cream, you'll find over 36 different flavors, in addition to frozen yogurt, sundaes, sherbet, non-dairy sorbet, ice cream cakes, and ice cream pies. You can order your dessert by the scoop, pint, or quart, and they come served in plain, chocolate-dipped, and waffle cones.

If you're spending your vacation in Dennis Port, Auntie's Ice Cream Parlor is surely worth a visit.

2) Ice Cream Smuggler

There's a famous ice cream shop on Main Street in South Dennis called the Ice Cream Smuggler, and it's a location you have to check out anytime you're on the Cape.

The reason is that this ice cream parlor was featured on the Food Network's "The Best Thing I Ever Ate" program, and many people believe it has the best homemade ice cream on the entire Cape.

Of course, you'll have to judge for yourself, but with roughly 40 flavors of ice cream available, you're sure to find something you like every time you visit.

Everything at the Ice Cream Smuggler is made on-site, and there are vegan options available, as well.

3) Sundae School Ice Cream

Sitting on Lower Country Road in Dennis Port, Sundae School Ice Cream is a fixture on Cape Cod, having been in operation since 1976. They have another location in Harwich, too, should you end up spending time in a neighboring community. 

The desserts at Sundae School Ice Cream are well-known on the Cape, and it has been named one of the country's best ice cream spots by Food and Wine Magazine. Everything at Sundae School Ice Cream is homemade, as well, and as a bonus, their products are for sale all year round.

As for the flavors, they generally vary by season at Sundae School Ice Cream, but you can expect to find close to 40 options at any given time, and, as its name suggests, you can grab a sundae at the parlor, too.

4) What's The Scoop

Shad Hole Road in Dennis Port might sound a little off the beaten path, but the reality is that it's just off Lower Country Road. This position puts What's The Scoop only a few minutes from Sundae School Ice Cream, giving you two wonderful options in a small section of town.

Although What's The Scoop doesn't make their ice cream on-site, they get it from Richardson's Farm Homemade Ice Cream, ensuring they're sourcing high-quality products for their customers. They also serve Richie's Premium Italian Ice and Cape Cod Coffee.

The menu at What's The Scoop features dozens of ice cream flavors, in addition to frozen yogurt, sundaes, banana boats, ice cream shakes, floats, freezes, smoothies, and gluten-free options, ensuring there's something for everyone who visits.

5) The House of Ice Cream

The House of Ice Cream is a relatively new addition to Cape Cod's ice cream scene, but they're quickly becoming quite popular thanks to their Main Street location in Dennis Port and the great products on their menu.

As you walk through the doors of this counter-service parlor, you'll find nearly 30 flavors of ice cream, in addition to sorbet, low-fat frozen yogurt, non-fat options, and numerous fruits, toppings, and sauces you can add.

You're sure to find the House of Ice Cream a fun place to visit with the family, and the toppings add a bit extra to your dessert every time you check them out.

Your Desserts in Dennis

Booking a vacation rental anywhere in Dennis puts you in a prime location for exploring the Cape. The town also features excellent attractions of its own, including its historic venues, beaches, and top-notch dining scene.

Naturally, you might venture out at night in search of dessert, as well, and Dennis has you covered there with its abundance of high-end ice cream shops. Make sure you check out a few of these local vendors when spending time in this community because they're sure to add more enjoyment to your time on the Cape.

Dennis Ice Cream

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