Monthly Archives: July 2011

Canada’s Birthday – My First Canada Day on the Hill!

Rural Communities are Stronger Together – Keep Government Accountable

On June 16, 2011 – Jim Diers writes “Building Strong Communities Means We Can Hold Government to Account” the complete article can be found at: http://www.guardian.co.uk/voluntary-sector-network/2011/jun/16/building-strong-communities-government-account

“Community is the engine room of people powered change; although there’s a role for government and other agencies with staff and budgets, there is no substitute for people identifying with and caring for one another and the place they share.” Jin Diers

The Great Northern Peninsula is stronger when we work together. Despite a small population and vast geographical distance, we have been overcoming barriers and working together in larger groups – with our partners. It is easier to reach our objectives, share-knowledge, skills and volunteers to achieve our goals for individual communities and regions.

One only has to look at St. Anthony Basin Resources Inc. (SABRI) to realize the success on can have when communities work in co-operation. I wrote an article on April 17, 2011 entitled, “Community Control Over Resources Leads to Greater Success in Rural NL (http://liveruralnl.com/2011/04/17/community-control-of-resources-leads-to-greater-success-in-rural-newfoundland/). In 1997, when the Federal Government released its new fisheries management plan, there was an allocation of 3,000 tonnes for the 16 communities (17 at the time) on the northern part of the Great Northern Peninsula. They included the communities from Big Brook (now re-settled) to Goose Cove that had lobbied for a share of the increased quotas. Having this resource in the hands of the communities, enabled SABRI to make local decisions that would provide the greatest benefit to residents of the area.

They were able to develop the many trails and gazebos, including the ones in Goose Cove that led me to view the Massive Icebergs. Additionally, millions were invested in infrastructure, hundreds of jobs created directly and many more indirectly in the region. SABRI is truly a local success story on the Great Northern Peninsula that was given a small allocation of 3,000 tonnes and manage it effectively to provide the greatest benefits to the people of their region. They should be commended for the work they do and the significant impact they have made.

Another example of communities working together is the Northern Peninsula East Heritage Corridor, consisting of a network of communities that work to build their tourism assets. As a collective unit they have been able to create a number of reasons for people to spend their vacation visiting their Towns. I know I have been to Englee, Roddickton-Bide Arm, Conche and Main Brook many times visiting the Underground Salmon Pool, Walking Trails or French Shore Culture Centre.

The Eagle River Credit Union is another success story of communities working together and deciding its needs. St. Barbe Consumer Co-op, Flower’s Cove and Grenfell Memorial Co-op, St. Anthony continue to exist because of its ability to serve their members.

Communities decide on what it values and what it needs to add to be happy. We have unique ideas in Rural NL and solutions to fill voids that do not always register or understood by the Government. There is a wealth of creativity, ingenuity and knowledge in our rural economy. Our suggestions do not always require hiring a consultant – sometimes it is a matter of good common sense.

I have written past articles asking, “Where are our Farmer’s Markets?”, “Where are our Social Spaces?”, “Where is Our Community Murals?” “Where are the Community Gardens?”. These are all small measures that can help with rural revitalization. These measures generate revenue, can help re-train employees and lead to long-term growth in various industries. Enhancing the community advances tourism and attracts a climate for further business development.

“Strong communities are the key to holding government accountable for protecting the rights of the most vulnerable. Social justice never comes from the top-down. People must be organized to support one another but also to demand that their government provide what the community can’t or shouldn’t do for itself. There are some things best done by community, some by government, and some that can only be accomplished by working in true partnership.”Jim Dier.

When communities come together and collaborate for the common good of everyone, there is greater success. We are beginning to see local groups with common interests, working closer together to share finite resources. We only have to look to co-operatives and how they have thrived in rural Newfoundland & Labrador. We need more local co-ops (agriculture, forestry, fishery, crafts, tourism), as well as collaboration from communities, businesses and government. There is room for everyone to play a role. Everyone has a strength and everyone deficiencies – so Together We Can Change the World!

Happy Anniversary Norstead – Eleven Years and more than Tens of Thousands of Visitors

Let’s rewind to July 28, 2000 – More than 17,000 people were on site during the unveiling of Norstead – A Viking Village &  Port of Trade (www.norstead.com) as they celebrated 1,000 years since the Vikings were the first Europeans to re-discover North America. The Province did a tremendous job marketing this summer festival.

Can you imagine the excitement on site for this new addition - an open air museum; one which provides a unique approach to education and culture, where one can gain an enriched understanding of Norse life. More than 28,000 visitors trekked through this site during the first season alone.

I have to extend a big thank-you to the interpreters and all who work at Norstead – this non-profit just 2 KM from L’Anse Aux Meadows (UNESCO Site).  Some have been on-site, showing tremendous dedication to the organization for the past 11 years.

It is a pleasure to walk through the gift shop, which has an array of local product – Dark Tickle’s Teas, Jams, Sauces and Syrups; Handmade Soap, Handmade Jewellery, Norse Swords, Norse Game – 9 Man Mills, Postcards, Local Art, Pottery, Knitted Items and more. The employees make products on-site and also during the off-season.

There is a wealth of knowledge from the employees and they are quite willing to share with you – creating a warm and inviting learning experience. You have the ability to try your hand at living like a Viking.

There is much opportunity to expand on this already wonderful gem on the Great Northern Peninsula. I see much potential to work with regional partners, develop further products, expand into Learning Vacations – live like a Viking (day, weekend or week-long stopovers), workshops and other activities. The future is bright for this not-for-profit entity.

It has added much value to our Rural Economy and also the travel experience of those who are fortunate enough to take the time to visit.

Norstead is a wonder we have, it is possible because f the wonderful people who show up and do their part every day. For that,  I thank you.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore 

 

GNP Craft Producers Launches Website – Shoal Cove East, NL

NEW WEBSITE: www.gnpcrafts.ca

GNP Craft Producers Launch New Website: www.gnpcraft.com

Visit them for a unique offering as they specialize in sealskin products.

Products are locally made. The pleated sealskin boots are made by a local resident in her early 80′s. She has been producing the boots for 7 decades. Seal skin boots protected us from the harsh winter conditions and damp weather.

You may want to pick up the “Out of Necessity – The Story of Sealskin Boots in the Strait of Belle Isle“.

I proudly wear my sealskin boots during winter. I turned a few heads at Memorial University on days walking across campus wearing sealskin prepared by my father.

Take some time to learn about our culture – the seal hunt, the impact on our economy and the art of sealskin boot making. You may be amazed with what your find out.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Twitter/LiveRuralNL

Local Conche Artist has Talent

I love art that comes from the local region. These past few days I have been able to visit gift shops and talk with some local artists about their wares. I have purchased a hodgepodge of Newfoundlandia, including sealskin miniatures, snowshoes, Labradorite, prints, shells, rocks, pottery and more. The region has so much to offer! Including Conche, NL – the new venue for the Centre for Textile Art at the French Shore Culture Centre.

I have purchased artwork in the past by this local Conche artist, but was greatly impressed by her newest additions displayed in the photo below:

Her work brings to life in vibrant colours the icebergs and outports. These miniature pieces of art have their own easels and can be put on display. They may remind you of a time when you saw these icebergs in person on a past visit to Rural Newfoundland & Labrador.

One can purchase these products at Stage Cove B&B and Bits-n-Pieces Cafe, Conche, NL. This business is a wonderful place to grab a cup of joe, many mouth-watering appetizers, excellent soup de jour or my favourite – a sweet dessert.

If you are fortunate enough to find yourself in Conche – please do not pass up a meal at the cafe and you too can fall in love with the talent of a local artist.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Twitter/LiveRuralNL

Offer More Grants to Towns – Less Grants to Big Business

The Northern Pen newspaper reports, “$4 Million Earmarked for Northern Peninsula” in today’s edition.

 In recent weeks the Government has made several spending announcements across the province in the weeks leading up to the upcoming Fall election.  

Timing is certainly everything….and Rural Newfoundland & Labrador is overdue payment. The $4 Million is certainly appreciated as it helps Town address some local concerns. However, the dollar value announced for the Great Northern Peninsula does not go far enough – further investments are needed.

Many Towns and communities on the Great Northern Peninsula are challenged with smaller populations and fewer businesses, resulting in a smaller tax base to draw upon revenues. This makes it even more challenging for small rural municipalities to provide basic services, such as chlorinated water and snow clearing, as well as being able to maintain eroding infrastructure.  Even coming up with a 10% share can be a constant battle.  A one-time increase to municipal operating grants needs a review, especially for small rural Towns.  

I’ve driven through many Towns on the Great Northern Peninsula and it is evident their roads are not of comparable standards to those of Local Service Districts and other unincorporated communities. Organized Towns  have property taxpayers; they should not see a reduction of services and have to drive over less superior roads.

It is fortunate through an Amalgamation MOU between the Town of Roddickton and the Town of Bide-Arm that they would see road improvements. On June 19, 2011 I was one of first to drive through Bide-Arm  passing by James Randell & Sons and not feel the washboard effect from the potholes. I slowly crawled over freshly laid pavement. This pavement is long overdue, a sign of progress. It may lead to new business developments, enhanced visitation to current businesses/attractions and increased housing starts.

Small  to medium-sized businesses are the drivers in the rural economies. We should give further consideration to providing them with more incentives to set-up in Towns of rural regions, adding to the local economy and creating jobs. Our tax dollars should be strategically invested and not just handed to large consortiums, oil giants and other large-scale companies. Small Towns need additional operating grants.

The Great Northern Peninsula will see further progress by working together. We may have a small population, but we are big on ideas with a tonne of heart. If we work together we will be heard, make good decisions and prosper as a region.

Christopher Mitchelmore, NDP Candidate for the Straits- White Bay North would like to meet with Municipalities, Local Service Disctricts, Local Commitees, Non-Profits, Local Business and Residents. We as the NDP are here to listen and work with the people of the district to find answers to your issues and concerns.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher Mitchelmore
E: christophermitchelmore@nl.ndp.ca
Twitter/LiveRuralNL

The Straits-White Bay North NDP District Association Calls AGM

The Straits -White Bay North NDP District Association Annual General Meeting is scheduled for 7:00 PM on Wednesday, August 10, 2011 at Flower’s Cove Lion’s Centre, Flower’s Cove, NL.

We as the NDP are here to listen and work with the people of the district to find answers to these issues and concerns. We invite you to participate.

Not a member of the NDP?  You can join online at http://www.nl.ndp.ca/join

As a member of the NDP, you will be kept up to date on the major issues of the day, and how to get involved. As well, you will have the opportunity to have your say in the NDP position on issues. You will be able to vote at party meetings and conventions, participate in electing party leaders, and run for elected positions.

Your membership is free however we truly appreciate donations from our members. Remember your contributions are tax deductable! Contributions can be sent to:

NDP Newfoundland & Labrador
P. O. Box 5275
St. John’s, NL A1C 5W1

For More Information:

Christopher Mitchelmore
NDP Candidate – Straits -White Bay North
E: christophermitchelmore@nl.​ndp.ca
Twitter: LiveRuralNL
Web: www.liveruralnl.com
http://www.nl.ndp.ca/electchristophermitchelmore
 

Volunteer Opportunities with the NDP District Association for The Straits -White Bay North

Want to volunteer for the Straits – White Bay North NDP District Association? An Annual General Meeting will be called soon and we will need to fill several Executive positions and Directors. We’d appreciate your support.

Additionally, you can join the campaign team. We will needed canvassers, telephone callers, sign distributors and anyone interested in lending their expertise and providing their time.

If you’d like to help please contact:

Christopher Mitchelmore
NDP Candidate for The Straits- White Bay North
Email: christophermitchelmore@nl.ndp.​ca
Tel: 709-660-0775
Web: www.liveruralnl.com
 

Family – The Cornerstone of Our Lives & Society

Family is the cornerstone of our lives and society. The moment we were brought into this world we become a member of a family. A unit that unquestionably had a significant influence upon our lives. Sometimes we take for granted how important our family is to us. We often forget that they are the people who have shaped who we are, supported us when we encountered problems and shared our hopes, dreams and accomplishments.

Did you ever hear the saying, “Don’t know what you have until it’s gone? Well I can tell you it is true. I have always had a strong sense of family, but when I lost my father I appreciated family even more.  There is not a day that goes by when I don’t think about him. I often want to tell him something exciting that has happened to me or ask for his advice on a particular matter. But I can’t because he is not there.  Although, I will never forget the wonderful memories and the things he taught me, especially our times cod jigging.

After all, this is one of the things families do, right? They teach us and guide us in the right direction. They try to provide us with a sense of right and wrong. As a toddler, they teach us safety and security. As a school aged child they teach us to respect others and as a teenage they teach us to be independent. The kind of person we become is a result of the values we were given throughout the years. Reams of advice came from our parents and siblings, “Don’t sit too close to the TV“, “Eat your vegetables” and “Don’t drive to fast” are some examples that come to mind.

At times we probably felt that the advice was not good and that our family was trying to ruin our fun. Instead, ironically, they were only looking out for our best interests. Our family sets the stage and are the supporting actors that mould our character.

How often did someone say, “You look just like your mother?” or “You have your dad’s sense of humour?” Family members show us how to love and how to make good decisions. When I am faced with a problem, I think, “What would my mother do now?” Our roots shape our personality and to some extent determine what we will do in life.

Sometimes we find that life is not all sunshine and happiness. There will be times when we are faced with obstacles, challenges and even failures. These are the times when we need our family the most. A family is supposed to form a safety net when one of its members is falling. It isn’t just there to shine brightly when everything is going perfectly. Family members will have problems from time to time – mom, dad, brothers, sisters, aunts and uncles. Drawing on love, support and strength of the family can help us weather even the toughest storms. For instance, think of the young teenage girl who gets pregnant. She is still in high school, has no money and probably not emotionally ready to become a parent. What will she do and whom will she turn to? If she has a loving and caring family, they will provide the needed supports. What about the times when we find ourselves in financial hardships. Everyone knows that post-secondary education is very expensive. Even more so, if you have to move away from your home. Probably one of the most trying times is the lost of a loved one. Whatever the case may be, the bottom line is that your family will be there for you unconditionally when all else fails.

My family has shared the highlights of my life. They have watched me become academically successful – obtaining a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) and receive the James Barnes Award for Academic Excellence; create my own business; internationally live, work and travel, and moreover become my own person. Family is there for all the important events and make up most of our memories. They are there to praise you for all the good things you have done and give you a pat on the back for your efforts. They are the people we want to spend the holidays with. 

Family is a true gift, most likely the best one we will ever receive. Even though we all have busy schedules we should appreciate those closest to us. If you have not talked to a member of your family in a while, give them a call, drop by and visit just to let them know you are thinking of them .  It will make a world of difference to your life and theirs.

The social media is no substitute for that personal touch, which was evident today at dinner. We went out to my grandmother’s house as she prepared a big traditional Sunday dinner with fresh greens. It was quite the meal with moose meat, turkey necks, peas pudding, turnip, carrot, potatoes, salt beef, molasses pudding and gravy.

We were 10 total, my cousin came with her four small children. It was nice to see so much life in the house. The kids ate in the living room with a TV tray each. Brings back memories when I was a child when there were other little cousins around and you always ate in the living room or at a small table. Now as an adult, we talked and yarned around the table as we filled our puddicks (stomachs) with grandmother’s good grub.

Usually after dinner I would rush off to get back to work, but my little cousin asked me if I would play “Go Fish” with her. I quickly agreed and so happy I did. My cousin is the eldest of four and she said that her youngest brother and sister (the twins) had to play as well, they were only 3. It was amazing to see the request to have everyone included, one could sense the strength of the family unit. We worked out a way to help the two enjoy the simple card game of “Go Fish”.  We let the youngest sister start. She got 4 pairs right from the beginning and in the end, took 1st place. Myself, we I was a distance last – but certainly the one who turned out to be the big winner.

When I got up to go, the four children all gravitated to my legs and did not want me to leave. They were like bolts that kept me secured to the floor. There is no greater feeling than spending time with your family, sharing smiles and making new memories.

Today brought back so many memories of my childhood. There is something wonderful about the sense of fun and freedom as a child. They truly enjoy life’s simplest pleasures.

In today’s busy world, please take some time to spend it with those who matter most.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Christopher Mitchelmore was elected the first New Democratic Party (NDP) member for the District of The Straits-White Bay North on October 11, 2011 in the Newfoundland & Labrador House of Assembly. He is the youngest sitting MHA in the current legislature.

 

 

Deep Fried Ice-cream – A must have treat at the Daily Catch, St. Lunaire-Griquet, NL

On several occasions I have seen Deep Friend Ice-cream on menus at various restaurants and have wanted to try the dessert. However, the portion sizes are often quite large, leaving little room for the sweet delights.

The The Daily Catch Restaurant in St. Lunaire-Griquet, en route to L’Anse Aux Meadows (World UNESCO Heritage Site) specializes in seafood. The food is delightful. In fact, they were even mentioned in the Globe and Mail.

And on the Great Northern Peninsula where the Vikings settled long before Columbus sailed from Spain, a sophisticated little establishment called The Daily Catch in St. Lunaire-Griquet (www.thedailycatch.ca; 709-623-2295) is an oasis of finely prepared seafood. The basil-buttered salmon is on par with the very best in Water Street dining. (Source Article – Click)

This is a true gem of the North, with superior food, excellent menu options, great wine list and the atmosphere to match. I have enjoyed the pleasure of the cook’s culinary skills a few times at this venue. They produce inviting salads, savouring seafood mains and create a happy mood as the traditional Newfoundland & Labrador music plays in the background.

Today was my time to shine - I was prepared and would certainly get my must have treat of Deep Fried Ice-cream today.

I ordered up their Drink of the Day, which was a surprise concoction known only by the server. I was presented with a bakeapple flavoured martini, which had the traditional berries at the bottom and was topped off with real iceberg ice. The iceberg ice really adds to experience, with purity and crackles as the shards gently melt. In 2010, a Youth Ventures participant pursued bagging the shards of icebergs as ice to sell during summertime at a local service station. Why are we not selling the ice on a larger scale? Opportunity knocks.

As I awaited my appetizer – the steamed mussels,  I took notice of the two icebergs positioned perfectly in view of the two windows in front of where I was sitting.

I struck up a conversation with the table adjacent. We talked about icebergs, local area, opportunities, culinary experiences and more. It was so fluent that I did not take a picture of the delicious mussels. However, I would not forget to snap my first trial with delectable Deep Fried Ice-cream.

The dessert menu claimed this is a “Must Have Treat”. It had the option of being served with Partridgeberry or Bakeapple. I am a fan of the bakeapple, as I find the partridgeberry a little tart. Served with whipped cream, a generous portion of local berries and wrapped in a secret coating – certainly makes this a field trip for the taste buds.

A nicely brewed cup of coffee with deep friend ice-cream was a culinary experience. I only wondered if this could have been enhanced, if I added some of my Screech Chocolate Sauce, purchased earlier at the Dark Tickle Company just a short jaunt down the road.

I left the Daily Catch completely satisfied, which is no surprise. So local or  traveller alike, if  you have never tried this treat, you can at this venue for a price of $4.75.

Get lost in a world of experiences on the Great Northern Peninsula of Newfoundland & Labrador.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Twitter/LiveRuralNL

Icebergs Again in Goose Cove, NL

A visit to Goose Cove is good for the body, mind and soul.

On July 22, 2011 – The water was peaceful, clouds puffy and lots of icebergs in the harbour. I passed by the Simmonds Family wharf and fishing rooms. Its age is greatly showing with the curves in the roof and slight slants to the right or left. It is evident that the decline and mismanagement of our fishing resources has led to out-migration and effected the way of living in this small Town, as it has with many other outports in Rural Newfoundland & Labrador. The prosperity is not felt in rural regions, as it is in large cities. The needed investments are not being made to maintain, further develop and properly market our tourism assets on the Great Northern Peninsula.

Greater action is needed to preserve the cultural significance and history in these small outer buildings that are truly a part of our heritage.

Further along there was Pumley Cove Trail. I was greatly impressed, as it had appropriate signage, was well mapped and provided important information, for example 1 KM (Easy). This is just the type of trail for me :). Good things happen when local groups, the community and a lead partner, like SABRI, all work together to develop something positive that adds value for the traveller and also for the locals that live here year-round. Community control of resources leads to greater success.

This Town is an absolute destination, see more for yourself…

The icebergs near the harbour. Another wharf once predominate, now falling.

A mini-berg near a house, fishing rooms and other outer buildings. I love the small wharf built along the rocks edge. Newfoundland & Labrador has talented people.

The highly landscape reminds me of a land before time, just perfectly preserved and available for those who are lucky enough to live here to enjoy. Goose Cove is a reflection of rural outport Newfoundland & Labrador.

The icebergs are so large they almost block the harbour.

The Great Northern Peninsula has the markings of a Great Tourism Advertisement that focuses on the people, lifestyle, culture, history, landscapes – the Experience. Let’s get moving on this as we have a world of living art to show in every nook and cranny! A photo can be taken just about anywhere…

Live Rural NL – Experience the Great Northern Peninsula

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Twitter/LiveRuralNL

 

Massive Icebergs on the Loose in Goose Cove, NL – Draw Crowds

Icebergs surround the tip of the Great Northern Peninsula. They have been spotted in Conche and can be seen from Sailer Jack’s Lookout, St. Carol’s, St. Lunaire-Griqurt, L’Anse Aux Meadows, Englee, St. Anthony and Goose Cove.

I had the privilege of driving to Goose Cove, NL today. It is another picturesque Town that is not far off Route 430, a mere 8 km from St. Anthony.  Although it gets much traffic, it does not see 30,000+ visitors that other attractions see. Locals know – so I encourage you to add Goose Cove, NL to your travel plans when driving the Great Northern Peninsula for your Rural Inspired Travel Experience (RITE)

Today, there is an extremely large drawing card with towering ice mountains that could be spotted from the harbour.

Here they are peeking out….

I had to get a closer look…

They were just breath-taking. On my return from the Pumley Cove Trail, I opted to take one last sneak peek of the bergs by the wintertime sleds.

There were so many wonderful photo opportunities that I’ve decided to post a second part and continue my Goose Cove Story. So hop in your car and get up to Goose Cove – before they are gone!

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Twitter/LiveRuralNL

NDP nominations close in Humber Valley, Burin–Placentia West and The Straits–White Bay North

 From http://www.nl.ndp.ca/news

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

July 21, 2011

NDP nominations close in Humber Valley, Burin–Placentia West and The Straits–White Bay North

NDP vice-president Kathleen Connors is pleased to announce the close of nominations in the provincial districts of Humber Valley, Burin–Placentia West and The Straits–White Bay North for the provincial election to be held in October.

Sheldon Hynes has been nominated in Humber Valley. Julie Mitchell will return to Burin–Placentia West for the general election and Christopher Mitchelmore will represent the New Democrats of The Straits–White Bay North.

“I am very pleased to announce these three excellent candidates for the provincial election this fall,” says Connors. “Each brings a wealth of experience and expertise and will be valuable members of a very strong team of New Democratic candidates in October.”

Hynes says, “I am very pleased to be a part of the surge in NDP support in the province, and look forward to representing the people of Humber Valley.”

Mitchell accepted the nomination in Burin–Placentia West saying, “The District of Burin–Placentia West is rich because of its culture, its resources and most of all – its people. My ambition is to work hard so that Burin–Placentia West can realize the prosperity those riches should logically bring.”

On the close of nominations Mitchelmore was ready to hit the campaign trail. “I am honoured to carry the NDP banner and be a part of a unified team,” says Mitchelmore. “The current Government has not given the care and attention needed in The District of The Straits–White Bay North. NDP representation would bring the people’s voice to the House of Assembly. We will work to implement changes needed to stimulate community and business development in the region.”

Kathleen Connors says the team of candidates nominated for October’s election continues to grow and she is impressed with the caliber of those seeking election under the New Democratic banner. Newfoundland and Labrador can expect nomination deadlines in other districts to follow in the coming weeks.

“I am looking forward to a very exciting election this fall. New Democrats are on the move and I invite everyone to join us and participate in the political sea change that is taking place across Newfoundland and Labrador.”

“We have 14 great candidates nominated and there are many more to come.”

‐30‐

Kathleen Connors, Party Vice President, 335-2493:  k.connors@nf.sympatico.ca

Enchanting Englee, NL – Celebrating Come Home Year August 14-21, 2011

Englee may be at the end of Route 433; however, it should not be on the end of your travel list. This quaint little Town is another destination on the Northern Peninsula East surrounded by group of mountains, rugged shoreline and islands off in the distance.

On June 19, 2011, I spent time at Englee with a friend from Salmon Arm, British Columbia. It was evident that he enjoyed seeing the vernacular architecture, which included several churches, salt-box homes and Barnes House (Englee’s Heritage House).  We took the trail that would lead us to magnificent views of Bar’d Island. After 164 stairs we reached the top, getting a magnificent viewpoint of the Town, islands and sea depending on where you venture. Even the modest hiker can reach the top, as there are several rest places, landings, benches and picnic tables along the way.

View of the Town:

View of the Coastline:

View Along the Trail:

Vantage Viewpoint:

The Town has ensured there are picnic tables for the traveler wishing to have a snack -  watch whales, icebergs and birds while hearing the waves crash. They even have a swing for you to unwind and take in the natural beauty. The forested throughout the trail is serene. One feels in tune with nature and your surroundings. A walk along this trail is good for the body, mind and soul.

The people of Englee have faced numerous hardships throughout time, especially with the closure of the fish plant that left many unemployed. Despite these challenges, the people of Englee are generous, warm and kind. The hospitality one receives when walking through this Town is authentic rural outport Newfoundland.

2011 marks Come Home Year for the Town of Englee and spirits are at peak. More than 1100 people are members of their Facebook group. An active committee, coordinator and volunteers are working tirelessly to put together a week on will never forget.  The group has a great looking schedule, as well they have a number of items for sale, including key chains, post cards,  hooked rugs, knitted items and traditional Newfoundland quilts. There are some big-ticket items, including a 12ft boat donated by local Allistar and Come Home Year Quilts. Hundreds are eager to pour into this Town at the end of Route 433! If you can participate or lend a hand email engleechy2011@yahoo.ca.

Englee will be a great place to discover, especially during Come Home Year, August 14-21, 2011

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore 

Twitter/LiveRuralNL

Englee Come Home Year Tentative schedule

Subject to change

Day 1: Sunday August 14, 2011

1:30-3:00pm Opening Ceremony

Location: Playground (weather permitting)

• Prayer

• Ribbon & Cake Cutting

• Church Service

• Mayoral Address (Rudy Porter)

• Meet ‘N’ Greet

6:00pm Open Air Service at the Faith Pentecostal Church Parking Lot

———————————————————————————————————​——–

Day 2: Monday August 15, 2011

8:00-9:30am Registration

Location: Municipal Building

8:00-10:00am Breakfast at the Apostolic Faith Group House

10:00am Kids Day

Bike Parade

• 1st, 2nd, and 3rd prizes will be awarded for decorated bikes

Location: Apostolic Faith Parking Lot (ride to the playground)

11:00am -4:00pm Games and Activities

Bounce House

• Three Legged Race

• 50 Meter Race

• Sack Race

• Spoon Race

• Long Jump

• Bunny Hop

• Obstacle Race

• Other Games & Activities

All participants will receive a prize

Healthy Snacks will be provided

12:00pm-2:00pm Dinner at the Faith Pentecostal Church

• Potluck with tea or coffee & dessert ($7)

• Serving up to 100 people

6:00pm Little Mr & Little Miss Pageant

• 1st, 2nd and 3rd Prizes will be awarded for each category

Location: H. G. Fillier Academy

• 3-5 years of age

• 6-8 “ “

• 9-12 “ “

• 13-18 (?) “

8:30pm Community Bonfire

Location: Lockers Point

———————————————————————————————————​——–

Day 3: Tuesday August 16, 2011

8:00am-9:30am Registration

10:00am Motorcade

Location: Municipal Building

• 1st, 2nd, and 3rd prizes will be awarded for best decorated vehicles

1:00pm Grand Opening and Naming of the Town’s Heritage sites

• Barnes House

• Dr. B. T Gillard Memorial Park

• Harvey’s Stage

• The Replica of the Schooner the Nellie Reeves

4:00pm-6:00pm Supper at the Faith Pentecostal Church

• Cold Plates with tea or coffee & dessert ($7)

• Serving up to 100 people

7:00pm Variety Show

• Skits

9:30pm Teenager Open Mic/karaoke nightages 13-18. Located at the Tennis Court Shelter

———————————————————————————————————​——–

Day 4: Wednesday August 17, 2011

Family Day

3:00pm-5:00pm

Finger foods at the Apostolic Faith Church Group House

5:30pm Light the Tree of Memories

• Make a donation in memory of a loved one & a bulb will be lit in their honour

7:00pm Gospel Fest

Location: H. G. Fillier Academy

10:00pm Entertainment

Location: Fire hall

• Dave McHugh

———————————————————————————————————​——-

Day 5: Thursday August 18, 2011

10:00am-12:00pm Englee Day Festival

Games, booths ($20.00) and various activities

• Row-boat Racing

• Tug of War

• Log Throwing

• Log Sawing

• Dunk Tank

• Balloon/Dart game

• Money Ring Game

• Other Games & Activities

*Prizes will be awarded for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners for each event*

12:00pm-3:00pm Dinner at the Salvation Army Church

• Meal Vouchers sold in advance (Soup & sandwiches, tea or coffee) $5.00

• Games will continue throughout the day

5:00pm-6:30pm & 6:30-8:00pm Supper at the Salvation Army Church

6:30 Open air service

Location: Apostolic Faith Parking Lot

• Fisherman’s Brewis tea or coffee ($7.00 a serving)

9:00pm Open Mic at Fire hall (must be 19 or older)

———————————————————————————————————​——–

Day 6: Friday August 19, 2011

8:30am-11:00 Breakfast at the United Church Hall

• Beans, bologna & fresh bread (tea or coffee)

• Or bacon, eggs, toast (tea or coffee)

2:00pm-4:00pm Seniors Social, visiting & tea

Location: United Church Hall

5:00pm Community Supper (meal vouchers will be sold in advance)

Location: H. G. Fillier Academy

9:00pm Entertainment (teenage dance)

Location: Fire Hall

• Jodi Rice & Band

10:00pm Fireworks

Location:

———————————————————————————————————​——–

Day 7: August 20, 2011

8:00am-11:00 Breakfast at the Salvation Army

Beans, bologna & fresh bread (tea or coffee) or bacon, eggs, toast (tea or coffee).

10:00am Community Bobber Race

Pay $1 for a bobber. There will be 1st, 2nd, & 3rd prizes for the winners

Location: Batteau Cove Brook

2:00pm-4pm Family Picnic (everyone responsible for their own food)

Location: Ball Field (no pets allowed)

10:00pm Entertainment (adult community dance)

Location: shelter?

• Jodi Rice & band

Day 8: Sunday August 21, 2011

11:00am Flower Service United Church Cemetary (weather permitting) otherwise at Church

1:30 Closing Ceremonies

Open air service at the Salvation Army Parking Lot (time will be posted later)

• Boat Tours will be available through Scenic Pursuit Ltd Bide Arm (ph# 709 457-2706 or 7678)

• Moose Burgers will be sold at Fire hall throughout the week

• United Church Hall will be open daily from 8:00am-8:00pm for tea, coffee , and to do some socializing

• Barnes House & Harvey’s Stage opened daily

Trekking the French Shore with the Swiss – Conche, NL

Saturday, July 16, 2011 – The view from Sailor Jack’s Hill gives a powerful showing of the winding road leading to the Town of Conche. The stairs may be a little intimidating but are certainly well-constructed. My Swiss friend climbed them at record pace as she was quite excited to see so many icebergs to the right.

There are an abundance of icebergs in St. Anthony and St. Lunaire-Griquet. However, they can be easily spotted on the Northern Peninsula East nestled just outside of Conche.

We toured the picturesque Town. Below I’ve chosen some of the highlights:

 

I have been to the French Shore many times over the past couple of years. I usually make the loop from the Straits to Plum Point – Roddickton-Bide Arm – Englee - Conche – Main Brook – Straits. It is a full day, but each visit offers a unique experience. Although I have travelled many countries, there is something amazing about experiencing the beauty and offering of what you have in your own backyard. If you are just visiting, spend lots of time on the Great Northern Peninsula, as it has so much to offer. If you are lucky enough to live here – it is a lifetime of experiences.

The French Shore is one of many places to add to your list. If you’d like more information visit www.frenchshore.com.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Live Rural NL Blogger Seeks NDP Nomination for District of The Straits -White Bay North in Fall Election

Christopher Mitchelmore, a resident of Green Island Cove in the Strait of Belle is vying for the NDP candidacy for the District of The Straits -White Bay North. 

Christopher grew up in this fishing community at a time when his family and fellow residents were faced with an economically devastating moratorium, which would lead to higher levels of unemployment, business closures and out-migration. 

As a teenager he faced his greatest challenge with the sudden death of his father, the late-Clyde Mitchelmore Jr., who passed away on a fishing boat in Nain, Labrador in September 1999. This life changing event would push Christopher to become more involved with academics, extra-curricular and community activities that would help with personal growth.

Mr. Mitchelmore’s first experience in the political arena was in 2002 as a participant of the Forum for Young Canadians in Ottawa, which goal is to foster and promote an understanding among young Canadians of the role and function of Canada ‘s three levels of democratic government.

Christopher started Flower’s Island Museum in 2002 at Nameless Cove. He later expanded to include a gift shop, 9-hole miniature golf course and worked with partners to host an annual summer festival. The business operated until 2005, when Mr. Mitchelmore took a position to aid other youth experience entrepreneurship.

In 2008, Christopher received a Bachelor of Commerce Honours (Co-op) degree and the James Barnes Award for Academic Excellence. His university experience enabled him to work for the Department of Innovation, Trade and Rural Development, NL Board of Commissioners of Public Utilities (Public Utilities Board) and London Offshore Consultants,  study in Europe, work in the United Kingdom and travel 25 countries. These experiences provided insight and valuable networks that will bring new ideas and help encourage business and community economic development in the District.

Since 2009, Christopher has been working for Community Business Development Corporation Nortip as Client Services Officer providing assistance to individuals and groups wishing to start-up, expand or modernize a small-medium business or social enterprise.

Additionally, Christopher has been involved with a number of organizations and served on several committees, including:

The NDP has long been a party that has advocated social democratic policies that support working people, families and the labor movement.  It is a party that works on behalf of the people and has put government to task as a strong opposition party. Recently, the Provincial Government sided with the NDP which will remove the Provincial portion of the HST from Home Heating this coming Fall.

“The region needs a stronger voice, one that will stand up for the people and address the everyday concerns of the region. The Great Northern Peninsula is faced with fishery woes, erosion of local services, inadequate telecommunication (broadband and cellular) services in areas,  plight of our youth and a long list of other challenges that affect the well-being of the individuals and families living in the region.”

Christopher Mitchelmore would be an energetic and educated NDP candidate of The Straits-White Bay North, bringing a new vision and your voice to the House of Assembly. 

Make your vote count this upcoming election. Vote for a party that has fresh ideas and real solutions. Let’s pave the way for new growth and prosperity in The Straits – White Bay North.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Norstead – Viking Village & Port of Trade

The Norstead Viking Village at L’Anse aux Meadows only 2 kms from The UNESCO World Heritage Viking Site  has been identified as one Canada’s top ten ‘Hidden Travel Gems’. It’s part of the Canadian Tourism Commission‘s ‘Locals Know‘ campaign. The Norstead site comes in at number 9 on the list that is determined by Canadians themselves from coast to coast. Other top ten picks include Georgian Bay in Ontario, the annual Caribana festival in Toronto and Long Beach, Vancouver Island. Read more… www.norstead.com

I re-visited Norstead on Friday,  July 8, 2011. However these photos were June 18, 2011. An well-built pathway leads you to the Viking Village. There you will pass a garden, Willie the Pig and be greeted by Lambi who is caretaker of the Snorri (Norse Ship – the replica sailed from Greenland, re-creating Leif Ericsson‘s journey as part of the Viking 1,000 Celebrations in 1997).

The Village has much to offer visitors – including locals that play the role of Viking Characters, buildings include the Boat House, Chieftain’s Hall, Church and Blacksmith Shop. If you come at the right time, you may even get your fortune told from Runes.

One can touch objects and take the time to understand what life would be like in a Viking Village some 1,000 years ago. One can throw axes at a stack of firewood or play 9 Man Mill. The 9 Man Mill can be purchased at the gift shop for just $30.00. As a collector of board games it is something I will have to purchase in the very near future.

My friend Ryley plays a game of 9 Man Mill will Viking Sven. Thank you Sven for staying a little later than normal, as it added to his Great Northern Peninsula experience.

Norstead is a gem on the Great Northern Peninsula. If you have never been or it has been awhile, well add the Viking Village and Port of Trade to your to do list this summer. I’ve been there twice already this season and many times last season. Truly a unique experience each time. Ensure to share a laugh and learn a lot from Lambi! He is quite the character.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

 

Babe, Orson, Wilbur, Porky? ….All Famous Pigs, but this fellow’s name is Willie :)

The concept of the hobby farm is far from new. The generation of my grandparents seemed to have cows, hens, pigs and other animals. Even as a child I recall some of the neighbours purchased a small piglet that we watched grow throughout summer. We were quite excited the see the squeaky animal, wanting to pet it and really, the stench did not seem to bother any of us. I guess none of us realized at the time that this animal would later be served up as pork chops and ham prior to Christmas.

In recent years to seems to be renewed interest in hobby farming. Are we going back to the generation of our grandparents out of necessity? Is it a food security issue? Or just re-new interest? I do not have answers to these questions, but would appreciate your comments or feedback.

A recent visit to St. Lunaire-Griquet had me introduced to a local that was raising a pig. Another stop at Norstead - Viking Village and Viking Port of Trade, L’Anse Aux Meadows also had me seeing the little pink guy, named Willie.

There is an opportunity in Rural Newfoundland & Labrador to partake in more hobby farming. We have an abundance of land, a changing climate that is more conducive to farming on the Great Northern Peninsula and the ability to learn from past generations before the skills are lost.

Although hobby farms take significant time and commitment from the owner. They can reap the reward of growing local, knowing what their animal ate and ensuring quality care.

A beginner’s guide can be found at: http://www.pighealth.com/MEDIA/P/BOOKS/beginners.htm

Experience Farming in Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Announcement – Regional Craft Survey 2011

 
If you and/or someone you know is a crafter, please take five minutes and fill out the attached survey.  It will help us identify new opportunities and jobs in our region.  I have attached the Crafters Survey (Click – Regional Crafters Survey 2011) for those wishing to print and fax back to me or there is also the option of filling out the same survey online via Survey Monkey. (See the link below).http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/F5VXY7QPlease send to any of your craft contacts.  If there are any questions/concerns, please let me know.

Thanks,Andre Myers
Economic Development Officer
Nordic Economic Development Corporation
Flower’s Cove, NL
P.O. Box 160, A0K 2N0

Caring for the Birds – Conche, NL

I have once again visited the sanctuary called Conche! It is one of the island’s best kept secrets that is no longer secret. Be thankful we have revealed to the world the opportunity to know the beauty that exists in this tiny town nestled at the heart of the French Shore. The 18 kms of gravel road and a little dust on your vehicle is well-worth the journey. However, I’ll save my most recent photos and share with you some from a previous trip this year that also provides a small sanctuary for the birds.

There is a Look-Out behind the French Shore Cultural Centre. A pebble trail leads you past the French Oven and outside instruction area. I believe instructional classes are held teaching various skills from the past, including French bread-making.. Most likely, the making of the bird feeders were directed just below. After carefully climbing the stairs to the Look-Out, I noticed the first colourful bird feeder. I have taken this walk several times and this was the first time these new additions were present. They are visually appealing and have attracted magnificent chirping from the birds, heightening the experience.

These small feeders are a rather small and simple addition, yet were enough to garner my attention. I thought about the beauty of design, each piece is unique. I imaged the children using their own creativity – a splash of red and a dash of blue. These young people learned several skills – woodworking, art and preservation of nature. There is value in small projects that can enhance a visitor’s experience and further build on the development of the community.

Conche certainly has several crafty artists that have cut outs of the island of Newfoundland, crabs and sea gulls posted around sheds, houses and even garbage bins. A splendid touch as you take the scenic drive. The people may be future instructors, if not presently.

Keep up the excellent work! I hope these classes continue and expand. The Live Rural NL blog wishes you every success with the opening on July 26th and of course continued operation of the French Shore Centre for Textile Art. Basket weaving does sound enticing.

If you would like to experience Conche, please contact the French Shore Historical Society @ frenchshorehs@nf.aibn.com.

One truly has to love the Life of Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

 

St. Anthony, NL Boasts Largest Concentration of Icebergs!

The “proof is in the pudding“! According to IcebergFinder.com,  the tip of the Great Northern Peninsula has the greatest number of icebergs present in Newfoundland & Labrador with the largest concentration being St. Anthony. Don’t believe me – see for yourself:

Image taken from www.icebergfinder.com on June 16, 2011 at 10:30 AM.

A closer look:

Image taken from www.icebergfinder.com on June 16, 2011 at 10:30 AM.

For frequent iceberg updates in Newfoundland & Labrador, visit Iceberg Finder.com. You can sign up to get alerts directly to your email. A great resource for those wishing to get a view of a berg!

CBC posted an article that notes in St. Anthony, “One of the icebergs is more of an ice island, about 600 metres long. It used to be part of the 251-square kilometre chunk of ice which broke off the Petermann Glacier in Greenland in August 2010.” http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/newfoundland-labrador/story/2011/07/15/nl-iceberg-great-year-715.html

If you’d like to get an up close and personal view, take Northland Discovery Boat Tours (www.discovernorthland.com)  located near the Grenfell Interpretation Centre. I’ve been on the tour twice myself and truly have been amazed. On both occasions, I have seen whales. On one tour, the whale breached out of the water. I may have to take another trip soon to see this ice island!

The icebergs are marvels of nature. Come to the Great Northern Peninsula and experience them up close and in person.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

25,000 Year Old Iceberg Water Makes the Perfect Brew

Photo: Taken at The Daily Catch, St. Lunaire-Griquet.

The Quidi Vidi Brewing Company located in St. Johns, NL is home to award-winning beers, notably Eric’s Red. I am a fan of the Traditional 1892 Ale. However, since introduced to the Iceberg Beer®produced by this local company, I have a new favourite. My first taste of the sweet bubbly was at The Daily Catch Restaurant, when owner Terry Hedderson provided me with a sample. I was sold from the very first taste!

Quidi Vidi has done a fabulous job setting this beer out from the rest, with a simple white label, long neck and beautiful blue-bottle. The bottle is elegance - as different rays of light hit it, parts change to darker and lighter tones of blue, yet the clarify remains. Once poured in a glass, it is absolutely pure. The senses are peaked with the taste, as it is truly a clean and refreshing beer worthy of its premium price point of $17.98 for 1/2 dozen at a Newfoundland & Labrador Liquor Store/Express. Beware, not all outlets carry it. I have only found this product at Hedderson’s Store, St. Lunaire-Griquet en route to L’Anse aux Meadows. This business carries a large selection of beer and variety of wines, including local products.

If you would like to drink a beer that is Made with pure 25,000 year old iceberg water, then it can be experienced right here on the Great Northern Peninsula.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

I AM A Viking at L’Anse Aux Meadows World UNESCO Heritage Site

L’Anse Aux Meadows World UNESCO Heritage Site attracts some 30,000 people annually! More than 1,000 years ago, the Vikings were the first Europeans to re-discover North America. They established a settlement and the mounds where their dwellings and outer buildings were placed still remain today.

 

I had the opportunity to watch a viking make a nail with a new apprentice from Germany! This little chap was quite the helper and was rewarded with the handmade nail for all his efforts as a memento.

L’Anse Aux Meadows World UNESCO Heritage Site is managed by Parks Canada, offering a quality experience. Be sure to visit the newly renovated interpretation centre and find out more about living like a Viking.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Twitter/ LiveRuralNL

“The Peak of Your Newfoundland Experience” – Fishing Point, St. Anthony, NL

Fishing Point in the scenic seaside Town of St. Anthony, NL is a destination! It is the meeting place for many residents, local rural settlers and even an abundance of tourist. In comparison, it is the Signal Hill of the Great Northern Peninsula. However, I believe the view is much better as one can often catch a glimpse of an iceberg, whale, sea-bird, fishing vessel or even a viking!

A photo montage of my last visit on June 18, 2011:

From the rugged coastline…

The beacon that shines…

The Great Viking Feast – Dinner Theatre at Leifsburdir. The only sod covered restaurant in North America. Food served by the Vikings!

Walking Trails, Nature and Wildlife.

The Lightkeeper’s Restaurant & Fishing Point Emporium. Great food with an exceptional view. The Emporium has a large offering for those wishing to take away a piece of the rock. There is also a viewing area of local textile wildlife.

Snow at Fishing Point on June 18, 2011! It has been a cold cold summer thus far.

Northland Discovery Boat Tours departs for the giant iceberg just off the bight!

Fishing Point, St. Anthony, NL has so much to offer. It should not be missed on your visit of the Great Northern Peninsula.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Follow me on Twitter @LiveRuralNL

 

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