30 Jul 2013

Petite Travelers Nantucket

Last week, as the news stations flooded our television screens and mobile devices with gloom and doom stories of crash landed airplanes and politicians behaving badly we found a glimmer of hope as word came across the ticker that a royal bundle of joy would soon arrive on the scene. Even as we went about our work days, we paused periodically to check the Twitter feed or glance at our home page for any update on the birth of His or Her Highness.  When the announcement was finally posted outside Buckingham Palace, the world uttered a collective “ohhh,” our hearts were warmed and for a brief moment a little Prince reminded us that there is still hope and promise in the world.

I love how Nantucket brings out the kid in all of us. It’s fun to stop by the new Petite Travelers location on Orange Street where I always get the urge to pause and “test drive” the latest toys, gadgets and gizmos displayed on their lawn. Mini grocery carts, lawn mowers, beach chairs and pop up tents. You can purchase child size Adirondack chairs for your summer home lawn or entire tiny cushioned patio sets for your Nantucket veranda.  My new favorite is the miniature hard plastic gas pump. The last time I was there, a fresh faced brown eyed little four-year old, trying out a new riding toy, sidled up beside the pump while I was admiring it.  He emitted a boisterous “Vroom, Vroom” and I asked him if he wanted me to fill ‘er up.  He nodded emphatically.  I filled, we both giggled and off he sped.

Bill Cosby famously said, “The essence of childhood, of course, is play, which my friends and I did endlessly on streets that we reluctantly shared with traffic.”  There is perhaps no better way to enjoy Nantucket Island than through the eyes of a child. To a little person, the island is one giant sandbox…and Bill Cosby would be delighted to hear there are still many quaint tree-lined neighborhoods where kids can kick a soccer ball or ride their bikes in the street.

Ask any child on Main Street Nantucket what he or she loves most about the island and you’ll likely get a short list; the beach, the ice cream, the bike rides, the Sunken Ship and of course the secret candy room at Force Five Sports.  It’s entirely possible you could also get this same answer from any number of adults. Nantucket compels all of us to take a page from our children’s playbook – simplify our lives, take ourselves less serious and invite our friends to play in our sandbox.

Tap into your inner child while on Nantucket this summer.  Take a Critter Cruise, learn to sail with Nantucket Community Sailing or check with Nantucket Bucket for a full menu of kids activities. For something more impromptu, organize a family bike ride, go turtle hunting in the marshes, build a sand castle and by all means stop at the Juice Guys for ice cream. Put down the mobile devises, pick up a sand shovel and let the playing commence.

It’s a small world.

Shellie Dunlap

Related Posts
  • 23 Oct 2012 Kidding Around on Nantucket There’s nothing like a group of enthusiastic energized school kids to put a smile on your face and remind you to pause for a moment and view the world through their lens. The exuberant group of kids in the photo above were gathered on the steps of the Pacific National Bank just outside my office... Continue Reading
  • 20 Sep 2011 Nantucket kids Peter Pan says if growing up means it would be beneath his dignity to climb a tree then he refuses to ever grow up. One of the most amazing things about Nantucket is it brings out the child in all of us. I had the opportunity last week to experience Nantucket through the eyes of... Continue Reading