Lighthouse Keepers Pantry
The Lighthouse Keeper at Sandy Neck Beach
The Lighthouse Keeper’s Pantry brand was created by Kelly O’Connell in 2020 and has become a silver lining from a year spent at home during the pandemic. Kelly is a Yarmouthport native who returned to the Cape when her job in New York City went remote last March. Kelly has spent her career developing food products for many lifestyle brands and with new-found free time, she took the opportunity to create her own line of sauces, condiments and jams as a way to return to her Cape roots full time. The line began as a hobby with 6 flavors of jams sold at a pop-up farm stand on 6A in front of Kelly’s childhood home. Over the past year, with the support of a local business partner, it has blossomed into 17 items using Kelly’s updated classic recipes inspired by the life of a lighthouse keeper on Sandy Neck Beach, Kelly and her partner’s favorite place.
Our story begins on the rocky shoreline of Sandy Neck Beach, just a short boat ride from scenic Barnstable Harbor, along the northern coast of Cape Cod. It's inspired by the people and memories of a place sacred to local.
Leo Hogan, a navy sailor and weathered fisherman, oversaw the beacon on Sandy Neck Beach for many years. Leo's passion for a life at sea called him to the quiet watch tower to live out his aging years. A mysterious and playful man, Leo told colorful stories of adventure from his time served in WWII that dazzled the wide-eyed boys and girls who summered at a neighboring seaside sleep-away camp.
The desolate barrier beach, far from town, saw long, grey New England winters. Never married, Leo was a man of many hobbies and a seasoned cook who survived on the bounties of the Cape. He dug quahogs and oysters, dragged for bay scallops and fished cod in his Crosby catboat. On land, he scavenged native beach plums and wild blueberries through scraggly dune brush, and picked the abundant cranberries from a bog just a short walk from the light to make his beloved jams, now the foundation of Lighthouse Keeper's Pantry, created on the shored of Cape Cod Bay.