Player: Dave Gove
Hometown: Centerville, a village in the town of Barnstable
Population: 47,821 (Barnstable population)
Type: New England coast town
When Dave Gove goes back to his hometown of Centerville, Mass., each summer, he spends his time re-capturing a missed childhood. And like every New Englander, he follows the Boston Red Sox with a passion and says there isn’t a better place to watch a ballgame than Fenway Park (and he’s been to Wrigley Field as well).
Is Centerville a big summer vacation spot considering it’s on the coast?
“It’s huge for that. It’s the biggest town on Cape Cod and there are a lot of beaches, shopping on the main street and ferries to go to the islands, like Nantucket. It’s also the same area that John F. Kennedy was from – Hyannisport which is nearby.”
I know you’re a Red Sox fan, but how much of a fan are you?
“Red Sox Nation is huge. They are my favorite team in any sport. My favorite player growing up was Mo Vaughn.”
Give me an example of just how important the Red Sox are to New England.
“The other day when Mark Teixeira signed with the Yankees it ruined everyone’s Christmas in Massachusetts. What happens with the Red Sox is the number one thing there, no matter what the Celtics or Bruins are doing. It takes priority.”
Do you go to many games at Fenway?
“I go to about eight each summer. It’s the best park in baseball, and I’ve been to Wrigley and a dozen other parks. It’s just the atmosphere both inside the park and outside in Boston. It’s a pretty surreal experience that you never get sick of.”
How did you get to Fenway while you were growing up an hour away in Centerville?
“My mom would drive and in high school I’d go with friends. As a kid it was a major deal to go to Fenway.”
What makes Centerville and Cape Cod in general different from other vacation spots in New England?
“The scenery, which gets prettier the farther you drive up the coast. Plus the size of it. If you go to Newport, R.I., it’s only one town. But Cape Cod is 11 towns so it’s a lot to see. It’s almost like it’s own state.”
What do you like most about Cape Cod?
“For me it’s home. It’s what I grew up with and I’ll always have a house there. I just like soaking it in even if it means just going to the beach by myself and reading a book. It’s laid back and relaxing.”
What do you do when you go back home for the summer?
“I joke with my mom all the time about this because I missed out on all the Cape Cod things as a kid because I was too busy playing hockey. So when I am there in the summer now I do things I didn’t get to do as a kid – fishing, clam digging, whale watching, driving my truck on a four-wheel-drive section of the beach. Those are the things I’m finally getting to do. I’m a kid now when I go back.”