Blog Archives

CNA, St. Anthony offers Community Courses for General Public

The College of the North Atlantic St. Anthony Campus offers a variety of community and general interest programs that are available during Fall, Winter and Spring. I have personally completed Introduction to Basic Digital Photography and Rug Hooking. I would love to take a class on seal skin boot making or snowshoe making. It is important we continue traditional ways of our parents and grandparents. Why not consider learning a rural or new life skill?

MHA Dale Kirby (St. John's North) & I at College of North Atlantic Glass Art Studio

MHA Dale Kirby (St. John’s North) & I at College of North Atlantic Glass Art Studio

MHA Dale Kirby (St. John’s North) & I visited the College of the North Atlantic St. Anthony Campus’ Glass Art Studio. Below is information on the program from the CNA website:

Glass Art
Dates:  Fall, Winter, Spring
Cost:    Please contact campus
Duration: 18 hours

 

This course teaches participants the techniques of creating glass works that can be displayed as works of art or for everyday use.  Participants will learn the basics of glass cutting, designing and kiln firing to create plates, platters, wall hangings, mugs, glass panels, and other similar items limited only by the artist’s imagination. http://www.cna.nl.ca/campus/sa/programs.asp#evening

The College also offers acrylic painting, sewing, cake decorating, hunter and fisher program and many other courses. If you have an interest, give the college a call today at 709 454 3559!

Live Rural NL -

Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

 

Family Time – Remember when the capelin rolled in…..

I remember the excitement in Green Island Cove when the capelin rolled in the beach one summer around 1991.  It was the year my father made my little dip net. With all the fuss we rushed to the shore to join other members of the community with our buckets and started filling them with our dip nets. You had to be quick, because it was only a matter of time and they would be gone.

My great-great-aunt Lavinia, who turns 98 years-young this year was on the beach that day. She arrived a bit later and didn’t quite have her bucket full, so we helped her top up her catch. She remembers that day and we have talked about it on occasion in my past visits. She’s a lady full of energy and she has a remarkable way of telling a story. I know from our conversations she was always up for a good joke or a bit of fun.

If you ever get the opportunity to see the capelin roll, it’s one of natures wonders. As they rolled around Logy Bay-Middle Cove-Outer Cove this past summer on the Avalon, it brought droves of locals and tourists alike, creating much traffic congestion.

The capelin – a small forage fish is often the lunch of cod. It is good to see them a plenty. I certainly saw much capelin coming ashore in Englee this past summer. The cod are back and there are giant cod-fish out there.

I have a capelin that was made locally, which I hang on my Christmas tree each year.

DSC_0145

There are many opportunities to show off your talents. The College of the North Atlantic, St. Anthony Campus has a glass art studio and Norstead – Viking Village and Port of Trade, L’Anse Aux Meadows has a pottery studio available for us to make unique product. Why not carve and create a capelin mug, bowl, jewelry, Christmas ornament, glass coaster or pendant? We have so many opportunities, potential markets from local shops, craft outlets, on-line, Come Home Year celebrations and a number of cruise ships that visit the area. Now is the time to start marking product, be ready for those who visit and experience The Great Northern Peninsula.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North

Treasures and Rare Finds at Dr. Henry N. Payne Community Museum

The Dr. Henry N. Payne Community Museum & Craft Shop at Cow Head, NL is within walking distance of the Shallow Bay Motel and the home of Gros Morne Theatre Festival.

On August 4, 2011 I visited this Community Museum. It brought me back nearly a decade ago when I first started Flower’s Island Museum in Nameless Cove in July 2002. The old homestead similarly was filled with items of the 19th century and had stories adorning the walls highlighting baking bread, domestic life and past residents that were pillars of the community.

Dr. Henry Payne was a dedicated teacher for 45 years, Justice of the Peace and a field worker for the Co-operative Movement.

Since the 1950s the co-operative movement has continued to grow. Today, it consists of related organizations with significant influence in the agriculture, finance, insurance, fishing, retail and housing industries. Retail co-operatives play significant roles on the Prairies and in Atlantic Canada, according to Canadian Encyclopedia.

Rural Communities were built around the cooperation of its residents. It led to development. We may have to re-visit the co-operative model and consider it for craft retail, tourism marketing, fishery and agricultural sectors on the Great Northern Peninsula.

The Museum has a wealth of artifacts from the past. Entrance is just $3.00 and if under 12 there is no admission fee. The kitchen has the old stove, with flat irons ready to be heated for ironing clothes. In the pantry there was an old water pump in the basin and many old tins and cans, which were former homes for tea, spice, flour and other foodstuffs.

The rocking chair below is a rarity. It certainly is one of a kind and a symbol of the times. This appears to be an old hooping barrel converted into a rocking chair. You may also notice the hinges on the seat. It was also good for storage – maybe the wife’s knitting and wool would be neatly stowed away. Nevertheless, this piece illustrates the ingenuity of a rural Newfoundlander & Labradorian.

Rug Hooking has begun to see a revival on the Great Northern Peninsula. I have seen rug hooking kits for sale at many outlets, the Grenfell Interpretation Centre sells a variety of hooked rugs, the College of the North Atlantic had delivered a Mat Hooking course (which, I enrolled), many rugs were hooked in Englee and Main Brook. This is an excellent opportunity to place your images of Rural Life in an art form. Community-members could come together to form a rug hooking cooperative as was in the past with the Grenfell Foundation. People would send their stockings to the women of Labrador and the Great Northern Peninsula to hook Grenfell Rugs.

The Dr. Henry Payne Museum offers Rug Hooking classes on-site, taught by the multi-talented Glenda Bavis. If you are interested in learning this trade make contact at: 709 243-2466 or
g.bavis@nf.sympatico.ca.

The museum is a rare find with photos, period furniture, artifacts, geology and more. Additionally, a visit to their gift shop is a treasure hunt. They have a little bit of everything from candles, postcards, hand-knit sweaters, pottery, pewter bowls, Dark Tickle products, books, antler buttons, pet rocks, jewellery, music and more. (http://www.cowhead.ca/heritage/)

If you have the time, drop by this museum. They are open until 8:00 PM! The two staffers working we able to answer my questions, as I can be very inquisitive at times. I like playing the role of a tourist even on the Great Northern Peninsula, as it is nice to see the product and service offering others experience when they visit local sites. Great job!

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

Twitter/LiveRuralNL

 

Glass Art Summer Camp

 

Please be advised that St. Anthony Campus will be offering  a glass art summer camp program this summer.  Please see the details below.

Ages:               12-18  years

Where:            St. Anthony Campus

When:             June 27 to 30, 2011 (8:30am-3:30pm)

Duration:         24 hours

Cost:                $120.00  materials included

Students will be taught the  techniques of creating glass works.  They will learn the basics of glass cutting to create jewellery, plates, platters, etc. The choices are as extensive as your
creativity and imagination.  The program will be offered pending sufficient interest.

If you know of someone who is interested.  Please share this information.  Interested people can contact  454-3559 or email Frederick.Russell@cna.nl.ca  by June 15th.

 

There are many opportunities for youth to get involved, learn a new skill, have fun and be creative. The College of the North Atlantic, St. Anthony Campus has many course offerings for the General Public. I have enrolled this past winter into a Traditional Rug Hooking and Basic Digital Photography Course. I would be interested in learning glass art; however, I do not fit the criteria of 12- 18 years of age. Next week, I will try my had at Acrylic Painting at George’s Art Studio, St. Anthony.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher C. Mitchelmore

My First Traditional Hooked Rug…

I have been taking a rug hooking course that concluded this past Thursday, which was offered at Flower’s Cove through the College of the North Atlantic‘s general interest course offerings.

Over 5 weeks, I was able to learn the process and get guidance, support and share some laughter with my classmates. There is something wonderful about adult learning. Even as adults, we are not to old to learn, to complain, to question and to open our minds and be amazed at our own abilities.

Below is an image of the completed hooked portion of my mat.

My First Hooked Rug

During the last class, I was very hesitant to get started. I really detest sewing. After cutting the edges of the burlap and ironing the back of the mat I began folding the edges and started sewing. Well the instructor, help get me started around the difficult corner. I know I will never be a seamstress, but I hope to finish sewing the edges of the mat to allow me to proudly hang it on my wall. I have one more side to complete and a few others before it is finished. I will take some photos and show you the completed project in one final post.

I have received my Certificate from the College of North Atlantic for completing 15 hours of traditional mat hooking. It is re-affirmation that youth can learn traditions of our ancestors and pass them on to others.

Live Rural NL 0

Christopher Mitchelmore

A Happy Hooker – As I learn the traditional skills of rug hooking.

Sir Doctor Wilfred Grenfell, a visionary for the Great Northern Peninsula and Labrador instilled in others the opportunity for greater economic development. A visit to the Grenfell Interpretation Centre in St. Anthony illustrates many hand hooked rugs on the walls, as well as available at the gift shop. A video played notes that women should send their stockings to Labrador. This would allow the material to be recycled and hooked into rugs.

I enrolled four weeks ago into the basic mat hooking course, offered by the College of the North Atlantic, St. Anthony Campus at my local high school, which is 10 minutes from where I lived. I have a love for life-long learning, especially skills that stemmed from necessity.

The class has eleven people registered. Most are nearing retirement or are retired, some are even senior citizens. It is quite safe to say, all are older than myself with the exception of our instructor. Ms. Gaulton, a graduate of the CNA Textile studies program learnt the rug hooking process and continues to create her own unique designs. Youth like Ms. Gaulton will continue to inspire others to learn, be creative and retain elements of local culture.

Rug hooking is no longer a necessity, as it was in the past. I was told by a co-worker, women would hook rugs out of potato sacks to place by bedside to protect their feet from the chilling cold of winter. They did not have a choice not to have these skills.  Those with a high skill-level were also able to sell to the International Grenfell Association, a specialty designed rug. A visit to a Personal Care Home in Flower’s Cove brought back memories for some residents who proudly say they hooked mats for Grenfell Handicrafts. Today the definite loss to preserve our culture is more and more evident. I am curious as to why did our parent’s generation not continue to practise such a useful skill? Most did not have large families, what consumed their time? Did our parents just become victims of mass consumerism and not producers? This inability to pass on tradition has a domino effect on the future generations. Typically, one learns from a parent, guardian or close relative various skills during childhood. These generational gaps, without proper bridging will see many skills lost in the near future.

There is interest in the revival of this tradition as I continue to tell people of my enrollment, which to my excitement,  includes youth. The interest grows knowing that the course is offered in their own community. General interest courses offered at satellite locations can create an environment to learn and continue on an individual or group setting after the last class is over.

Live Rural NL -

Christopher Mitchelmore

Opportunity to Hook: Mat/Rug Hooking Training

Grenfell Hooked Rugs

Dr. Wilfred Grenfell, founder of the International Grenfell Mission supported economic development on the Great Northern Peninsula and Labrador. He organized co-ops, especially for local women to help supplement fishing or other incomes from spouses. A visit to Grenfell Historic Properties this summer outlined a quote of the Doctor, asking people to “send your stockings to Labrador”. The women would then take the silks and use them to produce mats or rugs to sale. Some residents today continue with this tradition  and realize an opportunity to preserve tradition, generate revenues and expand your skills.

The College of the North Atlantic, St. Anthony, is interested in offering part-time evening Mat/Rug classes in the Flower’s Cove area.

They are attempting to determine the level of interest. Sufficient enrolment required in order for classes to commence.

To express an interest or to obtain more information, please contact Joan Kinden at 709 457 2719 or Sabrina Gaulton at 709 456 2834.

This is a great opportunity for residents of this region to learn a unique talent, make product or gifts that is one of a kind to pass on to family, friends or others locally and across the globe.

Live Rural NL – Christopher Mitchelmore

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