Located on Cape Cod, the Town of Mashpee is the fastest growing municipality in the Commonwealth, and felt by its new and old residents to be one of the most gifted with natural beauty. Along with the Martha's Vineyard Town of Gay Head, it is also unique as one of the remaining homes of the Wampanoag Nation, the Native American tribe which met the Pilgrims at Plymouth. Although now outnumbered by new residents, the Wampanoag continue to play a significant role in defining the character of the community through the town's Indian Museum, the annual July Pow Wow and other ongoing activities of the Tribal Council.
With over five miles of sandy beaches on Nantucket and Vineyard Sounds, extensive water frontage on Waquoit and Popponesset Bays, four of the largest freshwater ponds on Cape Cod, the three championship golf courses of New Seabury and Willowbend and numerous other visitor amenities such as the nationally recognized Mashpee Commons project, Mashpee is a prime resort, seasonal home and retirement community offering both a relaxed pace of life and a complete range of services. With the enhancement of its economic base in mind, the town is actively seeking both environmentally friendly industrial and commercial development and increased tourist facilities. As part of that effort the Board of Selectmen has officially embarked on a "green tourism" development project focusing on enhanced access and programming at the town's 1,000-plus acres of conservation lands as well as South Cape Beach State Park, the Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve and The Trustees of Reservations' Lowell Holly and Mashpee River Reservations. In addition, 2200 acres in Mashpee have been proposed for inclusion in a new National Wildlife Refuge.
All of these efforts are intended to ensure that the town remains true to its Native American heritage, maintains its economic vitality and protects its natural resources and the sense of tranquility that makes residents feel it is one of the best places in the Commonwealth to live, work and visit.
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Mashpee Town Links:
Mashpee Beaches Information:
The southernmost portion of Mashpee touches Nantucket Sound, Waquoit Bay, and Popponesset Bay. Within the town are a number of large ponds: Ashumet and John's Ponds in the west, Santuit Pond in the east, and the connected Mashpee and Wakeby Ponds along the northern border with Sandwich. Parking at all but one beach requires a Mashpee resident sticker obtained at the town hall on Great Neck Road; call the Mashpee Town Offices at (508) 539-1446 for more information. If you're not a resident, or more appropriately, do not have a resident parking sticker, South Cape Beach at the southern tip of Mashpee is run by the state and allows anyone to park for a fee.
South Cape Beach on Nantucket Sound is a great, unspoiled place to enjoy sand, sea, and sun. About 3½ miles from the Mashpee Rotary at the end of Great Neck Road South, the beach is operated by both the town, which has a parking lot and requires a resident sticker, and by the state Department of Environmental Management, which has a large public parking lot and charges nonresidents of Mashpee a fee per day. Lifeguards are on duty, and toilet facilities are available.
For freshwater swimming, go to Attaquin Park on the 700-plus-acre Mashpee-Wakeby Pond, the Cape's largest freshwater body. The park, off Mass. Rt. 130 at the southern end of the pond, has a swimming area, lifeguards, toilet facilities, and a state boat ramp with parking available.
Another popular freshwater spot is John's Pond at Hooppole Road off Mass. Rt. 151 and Currier Road. It has a public beach complete with lifeguards, a volleyball net, and toilet facilities.