Nantucket is known for her windswept shores, wide expanses of blue waters, and award winning dining. But make no mistake, Nantucket has a rich history and vibrant arts and museums scene! So don’t just save these for a rainy day, really spend time exploring our museums, art galleries, and theaters.
Museums & Libraries
Our most popular museum by far is the Whaling Museum. Located right on Broad Street, step back in time as you visit the museum and learn how generations of Nantucketers made their living off of the whale and her oil. Make sure to make your way up to the rooftop observation deck, which offers nearly 360-degree views of the heart of downtown Nantucket. On Monday evenings, the museum’s Summer Sunset Series features local bands such as Coq au Vin and Foggy Roots, along with light refreshments on the rooftop.
Our Nantucket Atheneum, housed among beautiful white columns, is a paradise for book lovers everywhere. Your library card gives you access to an impressive selection of titles for youth and adults. You can even rent out ebooks and audiobooks! Be sure to check out their free educational programs if you are staying for a while.
The Maria Mitchell Observatory is a great way to appreciate the night sky from down here on earth. Take a tour of the observatory, or learn more about how to use your own backyard telescope. There’s even an asteroid, “Mitchella”, named after Nantucket’s own scientist Maria Mitchell! If you’re more interested in sea-critters, the Maria Mitchell aquarium is also a great place to bring kids.
The Nantucket Lightship Basket Museum showcases another treasured island tradition. Marvel at intricate baskets crafted by master weavers, often topped off with beautiful scrimshaw. Watch films and learn more about the history of Nantucket Lightship Basket making. Or even try your own hand at the craft with one of their workshops! If you like what you see, consider joining them for their annual Baskets & Bubbly champagne luncheon & auction in late July.
Theatre & Arts
Theatre buffs will want to check out the Theatre Workshop of Nantucket. This organization has been offering up theatre on Nantucket for over 60 years, and continues to be a vibrant pool of Nantucket talent. In a typical year, the Theatre Workshop will host between 5 and 8 productions for our island. Tickets for this summer’s performance, Grease are on sale now!
The impressive building housing the Dreamland Theatre was fully renovated in 2007 to create an awesome theatre and event space. Check out their daily movie offerings, and keep an eye out for their live theatre! This year, the Dreamland Stage Company presents the Lion King.
Established in 1973, the Nantucket Arts Council is a non-profit which supports the visual and performing arts. Along with grants and scholarships, they also host a variety of fascinating events throughout the year! The Nantucket Arts Festival, Shakespeare in the Garden, and their downtown concerts are crowd favorites.
Lisa Genthner: Born and raised on Nantucket, Lisa recently graduated from Dartmouth College, where she majored in neuroscience and minored in economics. She feels most at home on the water and loves the endless beauty and entertainment it provides. When she’s not assisting with marketing here at Fisher, you can find her working in the pottery studio or catching a sunset from the beach!