Town of Dennis
Spanning the Cape, from Nantucket Sound to Cape Cod Bay, Dennis offers some of the widest array of summer activities for visitors. From the nation’s oldest summer theater, the Cape Playhouse to the numerous beaches, antique shops, candy stores and restaurants, there is something for everyone.
Villages: Dennis, Dennis Port, East Dennis, South Dennis, West Dennis
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Dennis History and Information
Dennis, named an All American Town in 1978, combines its traditional New England heritage with modern day conveniences. The villages of East Dennis, Dennis and South Dennis feature scenic historic districts hailing back to whaling days, while tranquil tree-lined streets meander through Dennis Port and West Dennis. Sixteen inviting beaches lie on the warm waters of Nantucket Sound to the south and on the crisp refreshing waters of Cape Cod Bay to the north. Numerous recreation trails offer healthful relaxation, and well-developed business districts throughout the villages provide ample goods and services. Residents of Dennis feel a sense of pride in their home by the sea. The quiet little town, incorporated in 1793, was named for Josiah Dennis, a favorite minister. The town was involved in the maritime activities of the 1800’s and was full of the amazing tales of clipper ship adventures. As the twentieth century approached and the glory days of sea captains faded, Dennis residents turned to commercial fishing and land-based industries. Dennis comes into its own during the summer months, with special events every week. Home to the nation’s oldest summer theater, the Cape Playhouse, Dennis offers varied summer activities, with arts and craft shows, concerts on the village green and Dennis Festival Days, held in August, which celebrate the friendly heritage of this All American New England town.
Points of Interest
1 West Dennis Beach – West Dennis Beach draws huge crowds in the summer and, appropriately, its parking lot holds some 1,600 cars. This area is popular with swimmers, sunbathers and families who come to enjoy the warm waters of Nantucket Sound. Located off Lighthouse Road.
2 Cape Playhouse and Cinema – Established in 1927, this is the oldest summer theater in the United States. Movie stars like Bette Davis, Henry Fonda and Gregory Peck have all performed here. Also on the grounds are a gift shop, snack bar. Nearby is the Cape Cinema, which plays eclectic, foreign and art noveau films throughout the summer. Located on Route 6A.
3 Scargo Lake and Tower – Set on a steep hill, this 28-foot stone tower looks over the ocean to the north, Boston to the west and Provincetown to the east. Legend has it that the Indian Princess Scargo’s father, the tribal chief, had squaws and children dig a pond an arrow’s flight wide to save a fish given to her by a brave from a neighboring tribe. The excavated soil piled beside the lake formed Scargo Hill. Located on Scargo Hill Road off Route 6A.
4 Josiah Dennis Manse – The Dennis Historical Society named this building after its original owner, Rev. Josiah Dennis (also the town’s namesake). Located on Nobscusset Rd., the restored home stores the Reverend’s writing desk, manuscripts and books. It is also filled with other exhibits including precious antiques.
5 Chapin Beach – With rolling dunes, much of Chapin Beach is secluded enough for quiet relaxation. Its desert-like tidal flats also allow long walks for the adventurous. Located at the end of Chapin Beach Road.
6 Sesuit Harbor – Always filled with summer boat traffic, this harbor is home to several fishing charters leaving for daily excursions on Cape Cod Bay. It also boasts a full-service marina. From Route 6A take Bridge St. to Sesuit Neck Rd. and follow it towards the marina.
7 Johnny Kelly Recreation Area – A 1 ½-mile stretch of multi-use trails canopied by pine trees wraps around this park filled with barbecue pits, a pavilion, playground, four basketball courts, two baseball fields and a soccer field. Named for Dennis resident Johnny Kelly, a multiple winner of the Boston Marathon, it is constantly used by people enjoying summer activities like softball, picnics, etc. Located on the corner of Old Bass River and Access Roads off Route 6.
8 Mayflower, Bayview, Corporation & Cold Storage Beaches – some of the best bayside beaches lie on the Dennis shoreline. All divided by private property, these beaches are very popular with tourists. Summer water temperatures are refreshingly cool, and their tidal flats are ideal for beach sports such as volleyball or frisbee. All are located off Route 6A within a five-mile radius of each other.
Beaches- Stickers are available at the Dennis Town Hall, Ph# (508) 394-8300
- Chapin Memorial Beach- Beautiful North side beach where you can four-wheel (sticker required) out to Bass Hole and fish or walk out on the flats at low tide just be careful to watch the incoming tide!
- Corporation Beach
- Glendon Road Beach
- Haigis Beach
- Horsefoot Path Beach
- Howes Street Beach
- Inman Road Beach
- Mayflower Beach
- Raycroft Parking Beach
- Cold Storage Beach- A beautiful northside beach, adjacent to Sesuit Harbor. A great kid beach!
- Sea Street Beach (northside)
- Sea Street Beach (southside)- A warm water Nantucket Sound Beach. There are fairly long set of stairs down to the beach.
- South Village Road Beach
- West Dennis Beach- A very popular Mid-Cape beach with plenty to do for the whole family. There’s a playground, snack bar, kite flying area, showers and ten lifeguard stations along with a 1000+ car parking lot.
Dennis Pines Golf Course 508-385-8347
Dennis Highlands Golf Course 508-385-8347