Our Cape Cod Lantern Shop
In 2019, Chris and Kelly Berardi became the fifth owners of The Nauset Lantern Shop. They immediately felt the 60 year history of the shop. It's right there in the tools, methods and templates. They quickly realized the time and energy that has gone into the creation of the design and then the years of adjustments and improvements. It is a lifetime of work! The most apparent was the quality craftsmanship that it takes to build such beautiful lanterns.
Before Nauset Lantern, Chris had been honing his skills as a carpenter for almost 20 years. Kelly was a successful business owner for 12 years before she sold it in 2016. Ever since then, they had been searching for the right business to own, whether it be a start-up or existing. They just thought it would involve wood.
With the belief that there is always room for improvement in one's skills, Chris was, and is, always challenging himself to try new ideas and methods to increase both quality and efficiency. When Chris was not working, you could often find him in his shop creating large runs of woodwork, whether it be for a jobsite, for holiday gifts, for Kelly or for fun. When the opportunity came to purchase Nauset Lantern, they immediately knew this was perfect. The best lighting that one can find was established, so with Chris' production-based mindset and Kelly's flare for design, the sky is the limit.
The Nauset Lantern shop was established by Arie Oppelaar (known as “Opie”) in 1959. It’s first location was Giddiah Hill Road in Orleans, Massachusetts. Opie worked with metals as a young man, at Todd Shipyards in New Jersey, where he was a WWII shipfitter before he joined the Navy and spent 4 years in the Pacific on an escort class aircraft carrier. In 1945, Opie returned home and joined his father as a metal fabricator.
Arie Oppelaar owned the shop until 1970 when after becoming ill, he had to sell it to Grady Comene. The next owner was Ken Alman who stayed for 17 years and had a reputation for excellence in workmanship. Ken trained his “apprentice”, Michael Joly who became the owner in 2000. The Nauset Lantern shop changed locations over the years, never moving far from Route 6A. Former locations included Bay Ridge Lane (off of Route 6A) and the Verizon building on Route 6A. In 1994, the shop moved to it’s current home at 52 Route 6A, where it has stood for over 25 years.
In 2000, Michael Joly and his wife, Barbara, purchased the shop. Over the course of Michael's 19 years as owner, his attention to detail and determination for quality quickly gained a strong customer base. Nauset Lantern went from being known as high quality to the best exterior lights on the East Coast. In 2018, Michael decided he was ready to sell. And on March 1, 2019, Chris and Kelly became the new owners of The Nauset Lantern Shop. Michael's love for making lanterns did not end with selling the business. He currently is an employee and continues his coppersmithing.