Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Why Dunkin' Donuts Is Coming to Wellfleet ....

At breakfast yesterday our Green Room guests were asking about how our cute little town had managed to avoid invasion by a Macdonalds or a BurgerKing. I had to tell them, with regret, that Dunkin’ Donuts will soon become part of the landscape as they cruise down Route 6….

“That’s not so bad,” said the husband, scooping up a mouthful of scrambled egg.

Dunkin’ Donuts in Wellfleet? Wellfleetians are not too pleased, especially now that we have a real French bakery that sells coffee and pastries: PB Boulangerie Bistro.

Here’s an email from one of my neighbors: “I am upset about Dunkin’ Donuts coming to town. I am of the mind that the site would be better served for Outer Cape Health Service (accessible, visible, etc) and the property at the Council on Aging used for affordable housing. Why do we 'need' a chain store when we have locally owned establishments that struggle to stay open year round? Once again ‘we’ lack imagination. Slowly Wellfleet turns into a community like every other. And, then what's next? I think that we are the frog in the pot of water, not noticing as it slowly starts to boil. Trophy fire station, trophy water system soon, probably trophy waste management system, police, etc.....(sigh)......oh dear...enough, now time to get out to enjoy this beautiful day!!”

There’s not much we can do. The space used to house Christine’s Oasis, a fabulous bakery that made custom birthday cakes and did serve as an oasis for a good while, but Christine and her husband Bob decided to retire. Sam Cooks rented the space for a couple years but his deli was obliged to close last fall due to the recession. Not enough business ... We may want traditional shops with class and character in town but shopkeepers must bring home the bacon every day, not only in the summer. Coming soon, to your favorite seaside town, Dunkin' Donuts trash!

I know some readers are dreading the arrival of this chain store and it will arrive, because the space is being renovated as I write (see below). What do you think? Was the landlord wrong to rent if the chain was the only candidate? Do you see doom and gloom in having Dunkin’ Donuts set up shop on Route 6? Will you drink your latt├ęs there this summer? Is this progress, or the beginning of the end of what makes our town special?