03 May 2016

Driving Miss Daffy On Nantucket

In the 1989 Oscar winning film, “Driving Miss Daisy,” Morgan Freeman starring as Hoke Colburn, reminds us that chivalry is alive and well. Hoke wins over the stubborn and sometimes crotchety “Miss Daisy” played by the brilliant Jessica Tandy, with his southern charm and the graciousness of a sincere gentlemen…exemplifying the true meaning of service and hospitality.
This past weekend Nantucket kicked off its spring and summer hospitality efforts by doing what it does best – it threw a party! The 42nd Annual Daffodil Festival was another party for the memory books! The Grey Lady opened her arms wide to welcome back summer residents returning to the island to open their homes, visitors arriving on the island for the first time and a multitude of return friends and family sporting yellow hats, coats, pants and face paint to celebrate the guest of honor – Miss Daffy.
It’s truly remarkable to witness how the people of Nantucket – the restaurant owners, hoteliers, shopkeepers and others – go to great lengths to ensure its guests feel not only welcome, but truly spoiled. Author Tim Chester writes, “The focus of entertaining is impressing others; the focus of true hospitality is serving others.” While the hospitality efforts of Nantucket business owners is certainly impressive, their willingness to serve their guests – to go the extra mile – is what sets them apart from others in the tourist industry.
I, for one, cannot wait to return to Ventuno this spring where Johnnie B and Jody will be waiting to welcome us back with warm hugs and genuine interest in our family and our winter happenings. Across the street at the Boarding House or The Pearl, we’ll be greeted personally by Angela who will make us feel right at home as Chef Seth prepares his latest culinary masterpiece in the kitchen. I’ll be sure to stop in to Stephanie’s for a peek at her new spring line and a dose of her quick wit…she always makes me smile. And of course, it wouldn’t be spring if I didn’t drop by Aunt Leah’s Fudge to see what new flavors she’s serving up and to inquire how her winter’s been. She’ll ask about my kids (she always does)…and she knows their names. That’s small town service at its finest.
What are you looking most forward to on Nantucket this season? Perhaps it’s a return to your favorite gallery, clothing store or restaurant. Maybe it’s one of the first rate theater performances at Theater Workshop of Nantucket or White Heron Theater. Or is it something as simple as a sunset stroll on Madaket Beach with a loved one, a harbor cruise with friends or a backyard clambake where your family can make memories that will last a lifetime. Whatever your bucket list, you can be assured there will be ample opportunities to experience first class hospitality on Nantucket this summer and to pay it forward to your own friends, family and neighbors.
Serve someone.


Shellie Dunlap 
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