Chatham News

CHATHAM – When Assistant Conservation Agent Paul Wightman needed boxes to hold trail guides for the town's conservation properties, he searched for commercially-made boxes that would fit the bill, but couldn't find any that had two compartments, were rugged enough to withstand the weather and looked good. When the woodworking group of the Chatham-Harwich Newcomers Club inquired if the town had any projects the...

How To Save Chatham

By: Tim Wood

Forum Participants Suggest Ways To Keep Town Vital CHATHAM – Prior to Saturday's Chatham 365 task force forum, Courtney Alex Wittenstein said she wrote a break-up letter to Chatham. “I'm living proof of what's happening here,” said Wittenstein, who grew up in town but lives in Harwich. “I couldn't move here, I couldn't raise my family here, I couldn't start a business here.” During the two-and-a-half-h...

CHATHAM — With it becoming less likely that some sort of shark barrier will be ready in time for swimming season at Oyster Pond Beach, selectmen have asked the parks and recreation commission to consider moving swimming lessons to a freshwater pond this summer. “I don’t know if I’m overreacting or not,” said selectman Jeffrey Dykens, who proposed the move. “I’m using an abundance of caution.” The town iss...

CHATHAM – The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is proposing to allow hunting on the Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge for the first time since its establishment in 1944. The refuge is proposing a public use hunt program for migratory waterfowl and coyote, and will hold an information session on the plan on April 30 from 3 to 6 p.m. at the community center. The draft hunt plan, compatibility determinations and env...

Chatham 365 Forums Saturday And Wednesday

By: Tim Wood

CHATHAM – There's an imbalance in Chatham—economic and demographic— that the Chatham 365 task force is working to identify and find solutions to. There's an age imbalance: 14 percent of residents are 19 years old and under; 44.5 percent are 62 and older. The number of school-age students had dropped by 35 since 2010. There's an average of about 25 to 30 births in town annually, and 150 to 190 deaths. There'...

CHATHAM — Shoaling in Chatham Harbor continues to be a serious problem, with sand choking access to both the North and South Inlets. Now, mechanical problems with the new county dredge are threatening plans to dredge Stage Harbor and its approaches. Town officials say that even if dredging is impossible, the Stage Harbor entrance channel will be navigable this summer, though the passage will be narrow. The M...

Fools Rush In: Annual Plunge Draws Hundreds

By: Cape Cod Chronicle

WEST CHATHAM — A few hundred brave souls took a dip in Nantucket Sound Monday afternoon in the annual April Fools plunge at Harding's Beach. The air temperature was 45, the water temperature 41, and the sign mounted on a fire engine declared “Feels like: Cold!” But that didn't seem to bother the folks who stripped down to their bathing suits and jumped in the water. Several swam out to where inflatable...

The Chatham Band is a beloved 87-year-old Chatham summertime tradition.  Now, from Tom Jahnke, the band’s director since 2014, comes a children’s book about town bands. He has just published “Little Town Band: A Musical Tale,” a charming picture book illustrated by Deb Hart-Chase of Centerville. It must be said that “Little Town Band” both is and isn’t about the Chatham Band. ...

Selectmen Like Scaled-back Plan For 90 Bridge St.

By: Alan Pollock

CHATHAM — Selectmen are advancing a plan to build a new shellfish upweller, floating docks and a public rest room on the small town-owned parcel at 90 Bridge St., next to the Mitchell River drawbridge. The conceptual plan they reviewed Monday evening would cost about $3.44 million to build, less than the $4.17 million projected for an earlier, more ambitious plan. Consulting engineer David Anderson of Stante...

CHATHAM –When Barbara Matteson applied for a teller's job at the Cape Cod Five Cents Savings Bank in 1974, she had no experience in banking. At the time she was living and working at the Dolphin Motel, and a friend suggested working “banker's hours” might make it easier for Matteson to take care of her 4-year-old son. Over the next four decades, she rarely worked “banker's hours,” but certainly found a home at...

CHATHAM – With shoaling creating difficulty in accessing the inlets in Chatham Harbor, the Coast Guard is looking for an alternative location for its rescue vessels that will provide greater flexibility. The agency has suggested creating docking space at the town-owned Old Mill Boatyard on Stage Harbor for its two 42-foot lifeboats. Currently, two of the vessels are docked at the municipal fish pier in Aunt Ly...

A Frigid Plunge For The April Fools

By: Cape Cod Chronicle

CHATHAM -- A few hundred brave souls took a dip in Nantucket Sound Monday afternoon in the annual April Fools plunge at Harding's Beach.  The air temperature was 45, the water temperature 41, and the sign mounted on a fire engine declared "Feels like: Cold!" But that didn't seem to bother the folks who stripped down to their bathing suits and jumped in the water.  Several swam out to where inflatable sharks ha...