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Iceberg Festival kicks off with a “rumble and a roar”

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The 7th Annual Iceberg Festival kicked off its 7th season this year to a room filled with energy and excitement as the icebergs surrounded the tip of the Great Northern Peninsula. Lavinia Crisby was the emcee and set the stage for laughter, fun and engagement with her ability to connect with people over the course of the event. I had the opportunity to speak with those travelling from Germany, Nova Scotia, Alberta, Florida and other parts of world as they gathered to celebrate the pristine beauty of the iceberg – which has been 10,000 years in the making.

The local Tim Horton’s in St. Anthony produces exclusively the World’s only “Iceberg” donut. The region is known for its iceberg water, iceberg ice and the Richard’s family of St. Carol’s who has been famously coined the Iceberg Hunters with their own series played on the USA Weather Network.

Local crab from St. Anthony seafoods was cooked and given away to sample – this was absolutely the freshest means to get such a product already cooked for those visiting, from local fisher to local processor to consumer. Many local restaurants sell local fish products, including our locally grown mussels.

One could watch sculptor Shawn Rumbolt carve an image from an iceberg with a chainsaw. Learn to paint an iceberg with artist George Bussey on a rock and have a souvenir to takeaway and of course enjoy the traditional music of Calvin Blake, Adam Randell and Brandon White this year known as “The Growlers”. Many were on hand to try to name some noise using the Newfoundland ugly stick, share in a scuff or two across the floor and join in singing a known song.

We were treated to Calvin Blake’s Iceberg song once more and like his words a rumble and a roar – the opening was just that, clearly a must attend event. There are still several days before the Iceberg Festival this year ends, but its never too early to begin planning for June 2016! Visit: www.theicebergfestival.ca for more information. A special thank you to all involved, especially the organizing committee for making it all possible.

Live Rural NL –

Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA (The Straits-White Bay North)

Rumbolt Sculpts Image from Iceberg with Chainsaw at Festival Opening!

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It all started with a block of iceberg ice propped up on pallets outside the St. Anthony Lion’s Club. This 10,000 year old iceberg ice would become transformed during the Iceberg Festival Official Opening by local carver Shawn Rumbolt.

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Spectators were guessing as bergy bits were being chipped away, would this be a polar bear or some image related to the Grenfell Legacy. It was an experience for those who travelled from Germany, Manitoba, Florida, Alberta, Nova Scotia to see the ice being carved right before their very eyes. As a local, I was indeed impressed by the work of Shawn Rumbolt, assisted by last years sculptor artist Randy Cull (owner of the Great Viking Feast and the Lightkeeper’s Cafe on Fishing Point).

It can’t be easy to get such precision with a chainsaw, but Rumbolt made the process look easy. It is not something you should try at home, leave this to those who are experienced. I would recommend that you make plans for next year’s Iceberg Festival to experience this unique art form found exclusively on the tip of the Great Northern Peninsula.

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It became clear that the sculpture was that of an Aboriginal. This connects closely with the tradition and cultural aspects of the Grenfell Mission and his service to all people of the North.

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The Great Northern Peninsula clearly has residents with exceptional talent and skill. Their willingness to showcase this for others to enjoy is part of who we are as a society. Thank you Shawn Rumbolt for your art! This carving in ice is just one of the many aspects of the Official Opening of Iceberg Festival. There is still so much more to see and experience. Visit: www.theicebergfestival.ca  for schedule of events and more information.

Live Rural NL –

Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA (The Straits-White Bay North)

Tip of Great Northern Peninsula Best Place for Iceberg Watchers!

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The icebergs continue to dominate our harbours – can you imagine this view from your window? It is a common occurrence.

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Tourists come in the tens of thousands to St. Anthony, Goose Cove, L’Anse aux Meadows, St. Lunaire-Griquet, Conche and Englee to see the dominance of the ice beauties as they hug the shores.

My friend Marilyn took this snap in Goose Cove yesterday. It is quite the capture:

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Get up close and personal with these big bergs. Next weekend is the beginning of the Annual Iceberg Festival.

From kitchen parties, to iceberg carving, painting, iceberg beers & spirits, tours of local attractions and special events. There is a Hypnotist and Magician performing next Saturday and a celebrity chef cooking up a feast at L’Anse aux Meadows. Get your limited tickets while they are still available. See details below:

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Learn more about all the fun events planned from June 5th-14, 2015 at http://theicebergfestival.ca/schedule/.

Until you see these giants up close and personal, you’ve yet to really experience the uniqueness of the Great Northern Peninsula and rural Newfoundland & Labrador .

Live Rural NL –

Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA (The Straits-White Bay North)

Iceberg at Tapper’s Cove, Torbay

I’m from Iceberg Alley! There is no better place to see icebergs than on the tip of the Great Northern Peninsula – L’Anse aux Meadows, St. Anthony, St. Carol’s, Goose Cove, Conche, Englee and many neighboring harbours are hugged by the 10,000 year old glacier ice. In just a few weeks, the official Iceberg Festival will begin on June 5th, 2015 – check out the fantastic schedule at www.theicebergfestival.ca.

It was a real treat to be on the East Coast a week ago in the beautiful Town of Torbay to capture a few views of the massive iceberg that is watching over Tapper’s Cove.

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Torbay is just a few minutes from the capital city and has experienced rapid population growth. I think some of it has to do with these incredible views and the feel of rural living. There is an expanse of natural trails, farming activity and water surrounding the community.

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I took one of the trails and to my surprise, I would meet my former Finance Professor from Memorial University. It was nice to re-connect, talking about photography, music, international politics and the natural beauty of the area.

The iceberg in Torbay is a nice preview for what is to come on the tip of Great Northern Peninsula. So plan your perfect get-a-way for ten days of iceberg fun and excitement!

Live Rural NL –

Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA (The Straits-White Bay North)

Icebergs dominate the coastline on the tip of Great Northern Peninsula

As ice remains a pressing problem for our fishers, with delays in the opening of some of our fisheries, it also sets the expectation that this will likely be another banner year for icebergs on the Great Northern Peninsula. It is always fascinating to see the number of people travelling to L’Anse aux Meadows, St. Lunaire-Griquet, St. Anthony, Goose Cove, Conche and Englee to get incredible close up views of icebergs.

In 2011, we had the Peterman Ice Island land here in Goose Cove. An incredible sight!

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Yesterday, I walked along the shores of my own community of Green Island Cove. It reminded me of a Fall vacation to Iceland, with glaciers and the magnificent sight of ice break-up on a day without a draft of wind.

A little further North on the Peninsula in St. Lunaire-Griquet and surrounding areas, icebergs have their full presence. They are right on time, given the Annual Iceberg Festival begins in on June 6th and lasts until the 15th.  You can visit the Facebook “The Iceberg Festival” where the photos below were taken (Photo credit T. Burden) www.facebook.com/IcebergFestival

The Great Northern Peninsula is coined as “Iceberg Alley”. You’ll want to be here during the 9 day festival (Schedule at http://theicebergfestival.ca), but it not be sure to visit throughout the Iceberg Season! The Great Northern Peninsula will not disappoint.

Live Rural NL –
 
Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North
@MitchelmoreMHA
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