Monday, December 12, 2011



Christmas in Provincetown

A Lobster Pot Tree!

December 19th, 2009

Provincetown does everything a little bit different, and the Christmas tree is no exception. Forget fir or spruce, the Outer Cape’s stand on a narrow spit of land surrounded by sea breeds originality.

The Lobster Pot tree, built by Julian Popko and family, stands proud in Lopes Square over the duration of the holidays.

A tree of cod, you might imagine, or perhaps, a decorated dune. No, lobster traps are the answer. Once a year a Lobster Trap Christmas Tree is built to celebrate the winter holidays and honor the area’s connection to the Atlantic Ocean.

Made of lobster traps, plastic lobsters, and thousands of bulbs, the tree stands tall at the base of MacMillan Pier, with holiday splashes of red and green that fittingly coincide with a lobster’s change in color from live-green to red-and-ready-to-eat.

The Atlantic Lobster, or Homarus Americanus, was once found in such large numbers in the Cape region that locals reportedly served the culinary delicacy to their livestock. After the onset of boats that could keep the crustaceans alive in their holds, the export of lobster to inland markets and restaurants became a vibrant industry – one that Provincetown was in a prime position to benefit from for many years.

Today, lobstering is still an important part of Cape Cod and there are many lobstermen who still use some of the same techniques to gather the succulent arthropods as their counterparts did a century past.

Traps or lobster pots, albeit now often constructed of wire instead of wood, are strung on lines that lobstermen haul through every few days during the warmer months of the year, hoping to glimpse that green-brown color that marks a live lobster as they pull their traps to the water’s surface.

The Lobster Pot tree, built by Julian Popko and family, stands proud in Lopes Square over the duration of the holidays.


GreginAdelaide said...

"Then Bob proposed:

"A merry Christmas to us all, my dears. God bless us!"

Which all the family re-echoed.

"God bless us everyone!" said Tiny Tim, the last of all. "

-Charles Dickens

GreginAdelaide said...

Actually, so far, this season, the "Christmassy feel" has escaped me.
Even though we are in December and getting ever closer to the day, Christmas decorations and crap have been in shops since Easter, it feels like.

December days ahve all felt like any other normal day.

But after seeing your usual lobster pot tree post, Justin, I DO feel Christmas is upon us again.

Thanks fella!

I got the spirit at last. I'll survive another Christmas...haha!

Jim said...

Now there's an idea! There are plenty of those 'round these parts! In fact, my nephew (in-law) is a lobster fisherman......wonder what he would think if......

JustinO'Shea said...

Excellentissime!, Gregorio. . . ;-))

JustinO'Shea said...

Do it, JIM! Do it! Send us a gorgeous photo. . . ;-)) please. . .


Justin, I think you are a poet, a
good writer, and an excellent guide
to all us 'Listeners'. I printed out copies of your 2010 Christmas.
I know it is tradition, and this time of the Year. Tradition goes
a long way with me. Thank You for
being who and what you are. You are hard to define for a young man.
I have never known anyone whom goes out of their way to give away
so much of your self.
My daughter has decided that Christmas is not as important to all of us. Sandwiches will be served in the afternoon. I was going to serve meals to the homeless in downtown Lakeland. But
I know I cannot stand for mass in church, that now I have made up my
mind to try and do the best I can.
That would be extra Praying for the
Homeless, and contributing to their
Food Bank. So That Picture of the
Lobster traps are more than a
Tradition, They are Christmas to
many, and the Tradition Lives, just
as Christmas is Alive and Well...........

Gary Kelly said...

I was in Sydney yesterday and spotted this scene outside the lost property office at Central station.

It was only when I got back home and uploaded the pic to my computer that I got the joke. Hehe.

Merry Christmas JustinO and the Duners.

Coop said...

Greg the stores started their christmas bullshit in October.
I don't celebrate retail's version of the holiday.