Thursday, 21 August 2008

Part One a trip to St.John's , Newfoundland

In the beginning of June, I travelled to Newfoundland to the Canadian Quilt Association National Juried show and Convention, held in St. John's. I left at 10:00 pm Pacific Time, fell asleep over North Dakota and woke up over Lake Michigan.Newfoundland/Labrador is a unique province of Canada on the Atlantic Seacoast. It is affectionately known as 'the rock'.

Historically, Europeans came very early: L'Anse aux Meadows National Park contains artefacts proving that the Vikings had a colony on Nfld. in 1000 AD. Icelandic maps were used by Cabot in 1497. (photo from tourist signs) Settlement started in the 1700's as a patchwork of different nationalities. Newfoundland remained independent until 1949 when it joined the Dominion of Canada as a province. The 'Newfies' were mostly Fisher Folk. There is a strong tradition of music with fiddles and homemade instruments. Even their dog is friendly, known as a 'gentle giant'. Bred to take lifelines out to boats in trouble in the giant waves of the Atlantic, the Newfoundland dogs were with the Merchant Marines and saved many in the North Atlantic during WW II. You can view ice bergs and whales off the rugged coast.

The plane touched down in rain with cold gusts of wind.
Our Conference was held at the Memorial University in St. John's. It is an interesting mixture of original buildings from the 60's to 80's and some very modern structures. I was kept busy on the CQA desk and couldn't take part in the great workshops, local quilt shows and side tours. It was an experience living in the dorms!
This little bird was nesting in the gardens. Always on the outlook for patterns ...And, a little bit of colour ....
Check out the winners in the National Juried show

And, the Trend-Tex Challenge is a fund raiser: Entries must use a specific choice of fabrics and relate their design to a theme. Trend-Tex generously donates the fabric for the packages. The quilts are raffled with funds going to support the CQA.

The first morning, a few of us hired a taxi for a quick tour of Signal Hill.
A military tower is built at the top of signal hill. Marconi received his first trans Atlantic message from here. Cathy wanted to see an iceberg, and there it was ... an ICEBERG in the bay! ... I did a five minute run around to take photos. The hill is also called the Lookout because you get a view of the narrow entrance of the harbour which is shaped like a long finger. and, a view of the narrow strip of land where building is possible. Looking further to the right is the city of St. John's.Next is a view from the other side of the inlet, taken from the town.
My photos of the town were taken from the window of the taxi as we raced back for the opening of the show. Small row houses were built over the years, sharing a wall. Colours are strong hues to liven up the cold, misty and windy winters.The weather warmed up, the dandelions were a blaze of gold and the skies were blue. The local committee did a marvellous job of organizing the conference. An army of volunteers ensured a smooth program. We also had wonderful dinners and great entertainment. Awards were in a spectacular glass building called 'The Rooms'. It holds the Provincial Archives and the Provincial Art Gallery.

Below - a view of the Anglican Cathedral of St. John the Baptist - built in 1847 with the addtion of several parts over the ages. you hear about Newfie hospitality is true! They are wonderful people. The island is home to people of many nationalities. The original fishing villages were: French, Spanish, English, Irish, Scandinavian, etc. They borrowed words from all languages and speak their own dialect. Nfld. even has its own time zone which is 1/2 hour off the Canadian Atlantic time.

It wasn't all work, we had time for some fun ... this is the '07-'08 board of directors for the CQA - Joyce (outgoing Secretary), Carol (Past President), Cathy (Membership), Karen (outgoing President) & Johanna (outgoing Vice-President).Dusty, our treasurer is in the photo below.
Our CQA table with Marsha (newsletter editor), me, Joyce, Cathy & Carol.
New to the board: Bessie (new Board Member - at large) and me (new secretary/publicist)!
Johanna, our '08-'09 president and me ... posing with a hilarious quilt!Serious business!
The last day the wind picked up, sweeping in off the Atlantic, making walking a challenge.
Now, if you would like to join the fun & work ... we have one open spot. Our vice president withdrew when her business became super busy. If you are interested, visit the CQA website, look at the requirements, and contact us:
The Canadian Quilt Association is about: drawing quilters together from across Canada, providing lots of resources, organizing a yearly National Juried Show and conference.
You can all join us at the next CQA conferences:
2009 will be in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
2010 is in Calgary, Alberta ... and they are busy getting it organized!


neki desu said...

someone se to have fun.
great photos!

neki desu

neki desu said...

oops i meant seemed :)

neki desu