Friday, 18 October 2013

Highland Village celebrates Oidhche Shamhna-Halloween

Highland Village celebrates Oidhche Shamhna - Halloween
The Highland Village in Iona will soon celebrate one of its favourite days on the Gaelic calendar - Oidhche Shamhna, or Halloween. For three nights October 24-26, the Highland Village brings to life stories and superstitions through its Oidhche nam Bòcan/Night of the Spooks program.
Oidhche nam Bòcan, features a special evening stroll through the Highland Village by lamp light, complete with costumed guides, stories, skits and memorable interactions. Highland Village personnel and volunteers work hard to introduce new story lines and surprises every year. This year there are some fun twists that the whole family will enjoy.
There will be short skits as you enter a number of the buildings in small groups. The action will focus on some of the old Gaelic superstitions and there will be some encounters along the way between buildings as well. This is a wonderful way to experience some of the old Halloween traditions.

The tour is followed by a céilidh in "The Tuning Room" with fuarag, oatcakes and more. This is an experience for the whole family. Prepaid reservations are required. Tickets are $12 per adult, $28 per family, or $5 per student. The program runs from 7 each 9 pm each evening.
For more information contact us (Toll free)1-866-442-3542 or e-mail
The Highland Village Museum/An Clachan Gàidhealach is a living history museum and folk-life centre located in Iona, Cape Breton Island, overlooking the Bras d'Or Lakes. Highland Village is a part of the Nova Scotia Museum.

Sunday, 13 October 2013

With the Cold Temperatures Starting To Set In - Nothing Tastes Better Than A Gingerbreak Cookie With A Cup of Tea to Warm You Up.

Chewy Chocolate gingerbread cookies


 ½ cup chocolate chips (the darker the better)

1 1/2 cups plus 1 tablespoon flour

1 1/4 tsp ground ginger

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp ground cloves

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

1 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder

½ cup butter

1 Tbsp freshly grated ginger

1/2 cup dark-brown sugar, packed

1/2 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses

1 tsp baking soda 1/2 cup granulated sugar (for rolling)

1 cup white chocolate chips, melted (for dipping)

Directions: Line two baking sheets with parchment.

In a medium bowl, sift together flour, ground ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and cocoa.

In another bowl beat butter and grated ginger.

Add brown sugar; beat until combined. Add molasses; beat until combined.

In a small bowl, dissolve baking soda in 1 1/2 teaspoons boiling water.

Beat half of flour mixture into butter mixture.

Beat in baking-soda mixture, then remaining half of flour mixture.

Mix in chocolate. Chill if you have time.

Roll dough into 1 1/2- inch balls; roll in granulated sugar.

Bake at 325 F until the surfaces crack slightly, 10 to 12 minutes.

Cool and dip in melted chocolate. Makes about 3 dozen

Saturday, 12 October 2013

Celtic Colours has arrived in St. Peter's. Check out the line up of activities taking place throughout the festival in St. Peter's!!

Kitchen Rackets @ Celtic Colours 2013

All the info about our Celtic Colours Kitchen Rackets is on this page!

This is our 6th year offering a week long program during Celtic Colours in St. Peter's. Once again, we offer visiting players and Celtic music enthusiasts lots of hands-on and up-close experiences with Cape Breton musicians.
Nightly Jam Sessions
From Friday October 11 through Friday October 18, join us for a Kitchen Rackets Jam Session at the Bras d'Or Lakes Inn. The sessions begin after the Celtic Colours concerts, and usually get underway by 10:15 pm. This is a great opportunity for visiting musicians to join in with our local players and singers.

Admission is $5 per person, or $2 with a ticket stub from that evening's concert. Admission for players and singers joining the jam is free. Open to 19 yrs and older only, please.

Each jam session is hosted by different players from St. Peter's and around the island. Our line-up this year includes musical hosts of all ages, featuring traditional and original Cape Breton music. Hosts will kick off their jam with a brief introductory performance and chat.

Kitchen Rackets Jam Hosts for Celtic Colours 2013
Fri. Oct. 11: Robert (SqueezyBob) Woodley and Tim LaBorie
Sat. Oct. 12: Leona Burkey with Allie Mombourquette, Rosie Bona & Jaidon Seymour
Sun. Oct. 13: Myles Davidson with Ross Ferguson, Ed Madden & Janine Mombourquette
Mon. Oct. 14: Bernie Landry et amis
Tues. Oct. 15: Hank Middleton & family
Wed. Oct. 16: Diasporado Band with Fork & Spoon
Thurs. Oct. 17: Bill Quimby
Fri. Oct. 18: Laurenn Marchand
Weekday Workshops
From Monday October 14 through Friday October 18 we offer small group workshops with highly accomplished Cape Breton musicians at the Bras d'Or Lakes Inn, and a square dance workshop at the St. Peter's United Church Hall.

Workshop descriptions are listed below.

Please contact the individual workshop leaders for advance registration or more detailed information on each workshop. All contact info appears in the descriptions below.
Roddie's Square Dance Society
Square dance lesson and session
Monday: 1:30 - 4pm
Join a gang of our regular dancers for some traditional sets and steps. Energetic dance tunes by live local players with an experienced caller. Come at 1:30 to learn the steps or get a refresher - then stay on for the dance. Novices welcome. Observers welcome. $10 at the door For more info please email Reg Landry at  or call (902) 535-2903.
Dwayne Côté
Fiddle from Scratch
Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri: 11 am - 12 pm
Did you ever dream you could play the fiddle? This course offers an introduction to folks who have never played one before. It will focus on holding the instrument, bowing and basic finger patterns. Fiddles will be provided but please bring one if you have it.

Beginner/Intermediate Celtic Fiddle
Mon, Tues, Thurs: 12:30 - 1:30 pm
Further your Celtic fiddle skills. This class is tailored for beginner to intermediate players and will focus on Cape Breton fiddle techniques and tunes.

Advanced Celtic Fiddle
Mon, Tues, Thurs: 2 - 3 pm

An opportunity to learn some of the more difficult techniques, and sets of Cape Breton Fiddle tunes – with a true master of the artform.

Celtic Guitar Chording
Mon, Tues, Thurs: 3 - 4 pm
Learn how to accompany Celtic musicians (fiddlers, etc.) on your guitar and utilize chording techniques.

Dwayne's classes are $35 each. Register in advance, or get more info:
Roger Stone
Scruggs and Clawhammer Banjo
Tues: 1 - 2 pm

This course will look at Scruggs or “Bluegrass”’ Banjo, as well as the mountain or Clawhammer style. Participants will learn methods of playing as well as proper set up and care of the instrument. This course will benefit novice to advanced players.

Singing 101
Tues: 3-4 pm

This workshop will provide insights and instruction into proper breathing and vocal techniques, an intro to reading music, including intervals, scales and harmony. Learn how to hear yourself sing! This workshop will benefit new singers, as well as veterans looking for a refresher, or some new practice techniques.

Roger's classes are $35 each. Register in advance, or get more info from Roger directly by email at:
Paul Davis
Beginner Tin Whistle
Mon and/or Wed: 2 - 3 pm
Paul Davis instructs this workshop that includes an introduction and brief history, basic scales, and music suitable for whistles. Paul will provide a list of relevant resources, websites, etc. and will give participants a CD of demo tunes at regular speed and slowed down to an easy pace. Maximum 15 participants, so be sure to book your spot.

Paul's classes are $15 each. Register in advance, or get more info:

Johannes Sturm
Luthier's workshop
Tuesday: 2 - 4 pm
Local professional luthier Johannes Sturm will tailor this workshop based on participants’ interests, discussing violin making and repair; and maintenance including evaluation and minor adjustments to most stringed instruments. The workshop will be of interest to all stringed instrument owners and players. Bring your instrument!

This class is $20 per person. Please contact Johannes directly for further information or to reserve your seat:

J.P. Cormier
Guitar Workshop
Friday: 2 - 3:30 pm
A 90 minute journey through the musical mind and repertoire of J.P. Cormier. The maestro will discuss, demonstrate and perform from all styles of guitar, including flat
picking and fingerstyle, and through the various genres of each style. History of the music and instrument will also be discussed.

This class is $35 per person. Contact Greg Silver to reserve your seat:

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

The Barn is Offering a Great Selection of Entertainment throughout Celtic Colours, Check it Out!!!!

Celtic Colours International Festival Opens in Just 3 Days! Check out the ticket available for events in Richmond County!!!


The Celtic Colours Festival, the music will fill the island.
 Just 3 days until the opening concert for Celtic Colours and the start of the Celtic Colours International Festival. Do you have your tickets yet? The St. Peter’s concert on October 16th is SOLD OUT and the Lower River Concert on October 15th has limited tickets left. Both the concerts in D’Escousse and L’Ardoise have a good number of tickets available at the moment, but don’t wait too long to call and get your ticket. The L’Ardoise General Store has some tickets available. The Sounds and Supper by The Sea event  at Lobster’s R Us are sold out, The tickets for the Arm of Gold Fish Cake & Bean Supper in St. Georges Channel are limited, but there are a good number of tickets available for the Arm of Gold Song Circle, and there are a good number of tickets available for the Turkey Dinner at Our Lady of Assumption Parish Hall in Arichat so get your tickets soon for these event so not to be disappointed.

With the Celtic Colors is just around the corner, Roddie's Square Dance Society will be putting on a participatory event-a square dance /workshop with live music on Oct. 14 at the St. Peter's fire hall from 1:30-2:30 followed by a dance from 3:00-4:00. There will be a light lunch from 2:30-3:00 and a craft sale by local crafters during the event. $10 for the workshop and dance and only $5 for the dance. Be there and be square!


Sunday, 6 October 2013

Cape Breton Potato Soup- Nothing Better To Warm You Up On A Cold Fall Day! Delicious.

Potato Soup
On a cold fall or winter day there is nothing better to take that nip out of the air than a delicious bowl of homemade soup. I must admit I am a soup lover, and so I want to share with you this recipe that I came across for potato soup. I hope you enjoy it.

Potato Soup

 5 cups potatoes, peeled and chopped
1/4 cup onions, chopped
2 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
1 dash pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
3 tablespoons flour
8 slices bacon
2 1/2 cups milk
4 chicken bouillon cubes

Combine potatoes, onions and water in a boiling pan.  Bring to a boil. Add bouillon cubes, parsley, salt and pepper.  Cook, covered, for 20 minutes or until tender.Meanwhile, cook bacon and drain off fat and set aside. Combine 1 cup of milk and flour.  Add to soup.  Simmer until thick,stirring constantly. Add remaining milk. Heat until hot.  Crumble bacon over top and serve. This would be great served up with homemade rolls straight from the oven drizzled with butter. Enjoy!

Saturday, 5 October 2013

Cape Breton Island Continues to Receive Acclaim From The Travel Industry! Named One of 50 Places to Visit In Your Lifetime in Canada

The beauty of our scenery

Cape Breton Island

Our Attractions
What a boost for Cape Breton Island Tourism. Cape Breton Island named one of the 50th, places to visit in your lifetime in Canada,  Check it out! Congratulations, Cape Breton Island again for being so wonderful.

Cape Breton named one of 50 places to visit in your lifetime in Canada

As stated in the National Geographic, "Cape Breton has been included in a list of 50 locations to visit within your lifetime in Canada. With the launch of 50 Places of a Lifetime: Canada, National Geographic Travel brings together the best Canadian travel writers with iconic National Geographic photographers.
The world’s first digital super mag showcases all-new content from every Canadian province and territory and launches Oct. 1 on Additional content rolls out the entire month of October."

With this promotion by the National Geographic Traveler it will definitely have an impact on visitors planning to come to Canada and where they will visit. National Geographic Traveler has quite a following and has experts who know what the visitors are looking for and what they want in a vacation and to have Cape Breton listed among the 50 places to visit in your lifetime is quite a compliment. We know that Cape Breton is beautiful and has so much to offer visitors in the line of scenery  from our lakes and ocean beaches to our mountain ranges and world class attractions, activities, music and culture and now through National Geographic Traveler magazine visitors coming will also be aware of this. 

The content of the magazine falls into four categories: Country Unbound: Civilization and nature in harmony; Urban Places: Exploring great cityscapes; Wild Spaces: Wonders of the outdoors; and Paradise Found: Retreats to restore the soul, and we are overjoyed to have our island included for its special characteristics. Canada is a beautiful travel destination for visitors and we are so proud to among the top 50 places you will want to come to visit in your lifetime.

Our music and culture


Looking For Something Just A Little Different -Try Pumpkin Pie With An Almond Gingersnap Crumb Crust -And Enjoy!

Pumpkin  Pie With A Twist.
1 cup (250 mL) whole natural almonds
2 Tbsp. (10 mL) sugar
1 cup (250 mL) gingersnap crumbs (approximately 20 gingersnaps)
5 Tbsp. (75 mL) butter, melted
1 lb. (454 grams) fresh deli cream cheese
2/3 cup (160 mL) brown sugar, packed
1 tsp. (5 mL) grated orange peel
1/2 cup (2 mL) sour cream
3 eggs
1 1/2 cups (375 mL) canned pumpkin
1 1/2 tsp. (5 mL) pumpkin pie spice
Sweetened whipped cream
Preheat oven to 325°F (160°C). Spread almonds in a single layer on cookie sheet and toast 12 to 15 minutes in preheating oven until lightly browned. Cool; chop coarsely. Place a generous half cup of almonds in food processor bowl with sugar. Use metal blade and process until very finely chopped. Pour into a large bowl; add gingersnap crumbs and mix. Pour in the butter and stir well to combine. Press into bottom and side of a 10-inch pie plate to form a crust. Bake 10 minutes; set aside to cool. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese and brown sugar with orange peel until well blended. Beat in sour cream and the eggs, one at a time, until mixture is light and fluffy. Beat in pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice until well blended. Place pie shell on a cookie sheet; pour pumpkin cheese mixture into crust. Bake in the middle of the preheated oven for 45 minutes or until filling is set. Let cool on a rack. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Top with sweetened whipped cream and remaining chopped almonds to serve.

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Don't miss out on the opportunity to buy great local items at this weeks Port Hawkesbury Market October 3 from 3-6pm at the Port Hawkesbury Civic Center

Don't miss out on getting great local products at the Port Hawkesbury Market on October 3rd from 3-6pm at the Port Hawkesbury Civic Center.

Here are some of the great items available-remember buy local!!!

Wayne Johnson from Mainbrace International Ltd a wonderful selection of Nova Scotia Wines
 Forever Green Organic Farm - veggies, burgers, sausages
 Wild Flour Bakery - cupcakes and delicious treats
 GEMMS from Forest and Farm - fresh produce
 Buschmann's Sausages and Meats
 Martin's Fine Bakery - pretzels, pastries
 Claire's Variety Produce - produce, preserves
 Cornect Family Farm - honey products
 Rock Loaf Farm - wool products, meats
 ROC Society - home made breads and baked goods
 Gordon Patterson - model boats
 Evelyn Chisholm - wide variety of baked goods
 Farma'Sea - seaweed based spices and health products
 Encore Jewelry - handmade jewellery, songcatchers, etc. The pieces are made with from reclaimed Musical strings
 June Bowie - knitted products
 Chandlers Art - all natural soy tealight candles
 Bernie Wood - wood carvings
 Rose MacLeod - knitted and felted products
 Phyllis Ryan - unique beaded jewelry designs
 Forget Me Not - handmade crafts
 Vanessa Greenwood - delicious baked goods
 TABLES - your green thumb information center and hobby gardener produce
 Celtic Card Readings by Rita Warner
 Kingsville Farm Breads and Specialty Coffees/Teas
 Chisholm, Jolene -matted photos & greeting cards
 Dundee Wooden Crafts (R. Smith) salvage hardwoods into pieces of everyday use items
 McGuire, Sandra -Aroma Therapy body products, hair pieces, cards
 Punjab Spices -Authentic Indian Food
 Quintessence- hand knit/woven hats, scarves, one of a kind products
 Knoydart Farm Ltd (F. Hunter)- Organic Artisan Cheeses
 Wally Ellison- local author with his latest release
 **and our newest vendors**
 Bee Natural- Honey, all natural soaps, beauty products and beewax candles
 Nicole Fawcett- Sanddollars, hand-painted beach glass, hand-painted feathers, magnet

Come out to the MacBouch Restaurant & Lounge for a great evening of entertainment every Tuesday from 7-9pm

MacBouch Restaurant & Lounge's
Tuesday Night Jam Session

If you are looking for some great entertainment for this evening come to the MacBouch Restaurant & Lounge at 9975 Grenville Street, St. Peter's. Every Tuesday night MacBouch host the Jam Session where some of the best local entertainers come out to perform from 7 to 9pm. Make sure to come early and get your seat as the restaurant draws a sold out crowds each week to this very popular venue.

If You Are Visiting the Margaree Valley on the Cabot Trail, Check Out The Excellent Entertainment Taking Place This Evening In Their Dining Room

The Normaway Inn located at 691 Egypt Road is a lovely accommodation nestled at the foot of the Cabot Trail. It also offers an excellent menu in their dinning room, but that is not all it offers it's overnight and dinner guests an excellent variety of entertainment nightly in their living room.

This weeks entertainment includes on Tuesday night singer and guitar player, Lisa Cameron, Wednesday night folk singer and guitar player, Louis Arsenault entertains and Thursday Rachel Davis and her fiddle wows the visitors. Sunday and Monday entertainers for next week to be announced at the end of the week.  Friday's are set aside for the Concert-Ceilidh at the Barn starting at 8pm and a dance at 10pm. The tickets for the Barn are $10.00, $15.00 and $20.00 for reserved seating and can be purchased by calling 1-800-565-9463, or $10.00 at the door for regular seating. Canteen services are available at the Barn, and the Inn dining room opens at 5:30pm on Barn nights.