Sometimes called the "Homeport of the Cape," Hyannis is a village on the Cape Cod Peninsula. Part of the city of Barnstable, the village is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the south, while Cape Cod Bay lies just a few miles to the north.
Purchased in the late 17th century, the village's name commemorates the Native American who deeded the village's land to the colonists. According to historical accounts, the village was acquired for a mere 20 British pounds, along with two pairs of pants.
Among the village's most famous residents was President John F. Kennedy, who had a home in Hyannis. The village is proud of this history, and statues and moments in honor of the president are prevalent throughout Hyannis.
Hyannis is the birthplace of Cape Cod Potato Chips. Founded in 1980, the company still operates out of Hyannis. Indeed, its factory is the area's No. 1 tourist attraction, drawing more than 250,000 people each year.
Cape Cod draws millions of visitors annually, making tourism a crucial industry for Hyannis. Hyannis Port is the largest recreational boat port and second-largest commercial fishing port in Cape Cod. This is in part due to its large natural harbor.
Another landmark business founded in Hyannis was the retail-chain Zayre. The discount store did well in the 1970s, starting the T.J. Maxx store brand, and was bought by Ames Department Stores in 1990. It no longer has a presence in Hyannis.
Transportation is another major industry in Hyannis. It is the primary point of origin for ferries to Nantucket and provides passenger access to Martha's Vineyard. The year-round ferry system is controlled by the Steamship Authority, which was founded in 1818 and employs hundreds people during peak season. Other transportation service to and around Nantucket includes catamarans run by both the Steamship Authority and Hy-Line Cruises.
Other leading industries are construction, health care, and accommodation and food services.
The Kennedy compound is one of the best-known residences in Hyannis. The estate is actually located in Hyannis Port, which is a wealthy village on Hyannis Harbor. Many summer residents reside both in Hyannis and Hyannis Port as the island of Cape Cod is known for its nice weather and beaches. Hyannis has many restaurants, coffee shops, boutiques and grocery stores.
Downtown Hyannis is known as the commercial district of Cape Cod and is also called the "Capital of the Cape" as it has town offices, shopping malls and a historic downtown.
While Cape Cod Community College is located in nearby West Barnstable, the village of Hyannis proper is not home to any colleges or universities.
While Hyannis doesn't boast any professional sports teams, the Hyannis Mets are a part of the Cape Cod Summer Baseball League, which regularly attracts top collegiate players. The nonprofit volunteer organization, Hyannis Athletic Association, oversees the team, and was recently co-recipient of a large grant awarded by the Yawky Foundation in 2005.
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