Nearly eight years ago I came back to Cape Cod after more than a decade’s absence. My intended three-month winter visit quickly turned to a summer season spent enjoying Sandy Neck beach fires and, in the fall of 2012, an oyster-fueled decision to call the Cape home once again.
Meeting Amanda Converse and Jen Villa at their shops on South Street, Hyannis that first winter back changed everything. They embraced me immediately, sharing all the places to go and things to do I presumed didn’t exist here. Their passion for the sandbar transformed my own long-held views about Cape Cod, a place I said goodbye to, I thought for good, midway through college in 1998. I didn’t believe it had much to offer me anymore beyond a great lobster roll and a decent beach day. I was wrong. Seeing the Cape through their eyes profoundly shifted my feelings about this place, the people doing exceptional things here, and the possibilities it holds. Together we realized we might catalyze this shift in others, and in doing so change the language about Cape Cod for the positive. An idea sparked, tumbled out of us, and LoveLiveLocal took flight. Since then, our story has unfolded in exciting ways we never imagined – and some we did.
Creating LoveLiveLocal with these brilliant women has been one of the most meaningful, transformative, challenging, and infinitely rewarding experiences of my life. Embracing change is essential to growth, both personal and professional; these last eight years have brought quite a bit of both. New projects and interests come into view, goals evolve, and we learn to honor our own needs by letting go of things we love to make space for what’s to come. While I remain deeply passionate about our mission, I have made the truly bittersweet decision to step away from my role as a partner in our business. I am so incredibly proud of and grateful for what Amanda, Jen, and I have built together, and I am thrilled to play a different role – cheerleader-in-chief – as they lead LoveLiveLocal’s next chapter!
So many of my friendships have been forged through LoveLiveLocal, especially those with our community of artists, artisans, musicians, small business owners, and diehard supporters. Thank you for believing in our idea and sharing it. Thank you for showing up to the very first LoveLocal Fest and returning year after year, bringing your little locals, friends, and family to experience our vision of what makes Cape Cod special. Thank you for putting your money where your heart is, and supporting your neighbors by investing in local businesses. You have made a lasting impact on me and I hope I’ve made a difference for you in even a small way.
You will continue to see me loving my local at our annual LoveLocal Fests, exploring the sandbar with the latest CapeMade Field Guide in hand, and most importantly, continuing to cheer on my soul sisters Amanda and Jen in continuing the work we started years ago on Post-Its and Sharpies full of big ideas and aspirations. It’s all (still) happening!
With so much love,