History Meets the Bay at First Encounter Beach

Posted by Mark Washburn on Monday, December 31st, 2018 at 9:33am.

first encounter beach - eastham ma

There’s plenty to enjoy about Cape Cod Beaches, from the sand and water to plentiful outdoor family fun. But when it comes to one particular beach, it’s the history that really makes the location come full circle.

Appropriately named First Encounter Beach, the location gained its name generations ago. It’s the place where the pilgrims and Native Americans first met before continuing on to Plymouth. Now, hundreds of years later, First Encounter Beach remains a site where American history meets the bay.

There’s already a plaque marking the location on the beach, plus the Salt Pond Visitors Center is a great place to learn more about local history. But plans are underway to bring even more attention to the site in the coming years.

Local leaders and residents are behind efforts to mark the 400th anniversary of that first encounter. They’re planning a big celebration in 2020, along with a number of events leading up to it.

With several different things planned to mark the occasion, the town also plans for a special exhibit at the library. The celebration continues with festivals, lectures and even the release of a musical composition to mark the big anniversary.

An opening ceremony kicks off in December of next year, with a recognition ceremony scheduled for the following year. Events continue into 2020 with the introduction of a Mayflower II reproduction, scheduled to arrive at Provincetown Harbor.

As for the beach itself, it remains a great location to visit, not just for its history but also its natural beauty and fantastic location. The water here is warm and calm, and it’s an ideal beach at low tide. It’s said that sunset is a great time to take a walk along First Encounter Beach, take in some history and simply enjoy your time on Cape Cod.

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