Lunenburg is such a brilliant place to live, as this video shows:
Mahone Bay Swimming Pool
Kids in Mahone Bay learn to swim at the Mahone Bay Pool, a gem in the heart of town.
The pool is open in July and August, and welcomes visitors as well as locals.
There are public swim times in the afternoons and evenings.
Mornings are devoted to Red Cross swimming lessons, from beginners to Bronze Medallion and Bronze Cross.
The teachers are mostly young people who have come up through the system. It’s a great summer job.
Classes and public swims are not crowded.
Registration is coming up soon. Find more information on the Mahone Bay Swimming Pool’s new website, created by yours truly.
Santaville on Christmas Eve
You can’t miss it as you drive along Highway 3 through Martins River. It’s Santaville, a fantasy landscape of lights around and behind the home of Eddie Aulenbach. During the Christmas season, he spends his evenings in his Santa suit, happy to give tours through the grounds: the little cottages and chapel and Santa’s Workshop, all filled with vintage toys and decorations.
My son and I had a tour of Santaville a few years ago, and he was enchanted, though a little scared to say very much to Santa so close to Christmas. Home grown entertainment to be sure, without the production values of a big mall display. But the magic of coloured lights on a dark, dark night, a personal tour from St. Nick himself, and a little stuffed toy (previously loved) at the end of the visit, are enough to please a small child. I enjoyed seeing decorations and toys dating from my own childhood. And it’s free.
It hasn’t been smooth sailing for Santa. In 2002, Aulenbach was charged with unsightly premises by the Municipality. (I’ll concur that the charm of the place is more powerful at night than during the daytime.) The charges didn’t stick, and the Municipality got a lump of coal in its Christmas stocking. Then in 2004, the century-old house burned down in an uninsured fire. The local community held fundraisers, and a generous person donated a mobile home, and so Santaville was saved again – earning some very good children extra special presents the following Christmas.
Do you have childhood memories of Santaville, or have you taken your children through it? If so, please leave a comment below.
(Photos taken with a Fujifilm FinePix F1800.)
Christmas in Mahone Bay
Don’t ever imagine that life in the more rural parts of Nova Scotia is devoid of fine cultural experiences. In fact, there is more going on in many communities than a busy person can take in, and often it is all the richer for being home-grown.
Such was the case tonight when the St. John’s Lutheran Mother & Daughter Choir, directed by Leslee Barry, presented their Christmas Concert. The beautiful, large church was packed. No wonder: the music was very fine, with interesting, complex arrangements well executed, and very accomplished instrumentalists accompanying the choir. Much money was raised for the local food bank, and everyone went home satisfied, and in fine Christmas spirit.
Photos taken with a Fujifilm FinePix S1800 digital camera.
So much the better for knowing several people in the choir! That’s the human scale of life here in Nova Scotia.
South Shore for Haiti
I was the “Dessert Queen” in Mahone Bay on Saturday night, receiving desserts people brought to the Mahone Bay Centre, sticking their names on the bottoms of the pie plates so they’d get them back later, sometimes tasting the desserts to find out what they were and if they contained nuts, slicing up cheesecake, apple strudel and blueberry pie….Nice work if you can get it?
It was a benefit for Haiti, to collect money for Oxfam’s Earthquake Emergency Relief Fund. Oxfam has a team in Haiti permanently, so they are well positioned to get aid to people quickly. As we have seen, speed is all important in saving lives and preventing chaos.
The little town of Mahone Bay raised $13,600 for Haiti that night. There were soups, chili, wonderful breads, coffee, cider and desserts, all donated by individuals and businesses in the community. There were musicians donating their talents on 2 stages, and craft tables for kids to make things to sell and to send to children in Haiti. 300 people were fed. We wished we could have sent all that food to Haiti, but money travels lighter.
It was a terrific community building event, spearheaded and MC’d by Camelia Frieberg of Pollination Project with Valerie Hearder and Bonnie Isabelle (who did a wonderful job coordinating a busy kitchen with at least a dozen volunteers, as I can attest) the South Shore Waldorf School, Indian Point Marine Farms, Boulangerie La Vendéenne, LaHave Bakery, CafeHaus, Rumtopf Farm and many, many local folks who brought in crock pots and stock pots full of delicious chili and hearty soups and stews.
Musicians included Shalan Joudrey, Mary Knickle and HodgePodge, Paul Buchanan and Eilidh Campbell, Slow Cooking Cover, Tim Merry, Jamie Junger and friends, the Rhodenizer Family, Tom Haddal and friends, Reid Campbell, The Trips and Russ Winham and Kirk Comstock.
You can still donate to Oxfam and have it counted in the tally for the South Shore for Haiti event until Jan. 28. Here’s how: Go to www.oxfam.ca, choose “Haiti Earthquake 2010” and in the Comments section enter “Event: South Shore for Haiti”. Or phone 1-800-466-9326 and ask them to note that it is for “Event: South Shore for Haiti”.