The Siasconset Market, a staple of the village on Nantucket's east end, was sold Friday by owner Mark Donato to the 'Sconset Trust for $5.2 million.
The 'Sconset Trust announced that it "will be a mission-driven landlord to ensure that the Market remains a key resource for the village into the future." Rolf and Cindy Nelson, who currently lease the Siasconset Market from Donato and met there as teenagers in the 1980s, will continue running the business for the Trust.
"I couldn't find a better partner to sell to and I'm very pleased with how this turned out," Donato told the Current on Friday. "Both myself and the Trust have 'Sconset at the top of our minds. I was part of the past and they're the future. I'm very excited for what's going to continue and that the lessees Rolf and Cindy will stay on."
Donato had owned the property at 4 Main Street in Siasconset for 40 years, growing the business over time before turning it over to the Nelsons, who have run the market for the past six years and previously operated the nearby Sconset Cafe and Sconset Bookstore.
For the Trust - a non-profit organization - the sale was something of a full-circle moment. Donato had purchased the Siasconset Market from Robert Shetterly in 1984, and Shetterly used the proceeds to create the ’Sconset Trust along with his friends Mary Heller and George Buckingham.
"In a real sense, the Market has been linked to the Trust since its inception," the organization announced Friday to herald its 40th anniversary. "Mark and the ’Sconset Trust Board share the view that the Market is a critical village asset that is best protected and managed by the Trust. The Trust thanks Mark for his vision, for his commitment to the community, and for working with the Board to develop a transition plan. The Trust would also like to thank Rolf and Cindy Nelson, who played an important role in the Trust’s acquisition and continue to be thoughtful stewards of this historic property and the ’Sconset community."