Check out anything you may have missed on our show featuring PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND where we…
“Talk about the food, the fun, the flavor. Every town or city has a story to tell, and we get to tell that story!”
Prince Edward Island is a beautiful place all on its own. However, it would not be the distinguished gathering place that it is today if it were not for a story, or more specifically, a girl. Lucy Maud Montgomery wrote the delightful book, “Anne of Green Gables.” A sweet little home and farm in Cavendish sparked the tale of Anne. Thank YOU Montgomery, we will forever cherish the lifestyle you painted within the wonderful place of Prince Edward Island.
We bring up Anne because she (her character) truly shaped the culture of the splendid island. I’m curious what the place would be like if it weren’t for the following Anne of Green Gables brought to Cavendish. To see the influence that she had on this place, Eric asked us, “Do your surroundings influence you, or do you influence your surroundings.”
Wally talked about his time spent at boot camp. Every Sunday the men and women were excused to worship as they would. At first, Wally was the only one that was set apart as a Mormon, toward the end of his duration nine other soldiers had decided to join him on Sunday. What a trend-setter 😉
For myself I know that I wear my heart on my sleeve. Unfortunately if I am in a bad mood, I am terrible at trying to conceal it. Therefore, all of those around me can feel it, and I become a major party pooper. I hope this means that when I am happy I set just as much of precedence, but in a positive way.
Eric is a chameleon, he is always one to immerse himself in what he is surrounded by. Granted, he still uses caution! But no matter who you put him around, it will seem like they’re best buds in no time. So as influential as Eric may be as an artist, He’s pretty influenced by what surrounds him.
AND NOW IT’S TIME FOR HISTORY… in a nutshell
Today we are exploring two histories of the same place. One is factual, the other is pure fiction. Or is it. When we’re done, I’ll let you decide.
First, the fact. We are talking about an island. It has a population of 144,000, it’s located 200 km north of Halifax, Nova Scotia and 600 Km east of Quebec City. It has an area of 2195.27 square Miles. It’s capital is Charlottetown. It’s the 104th largest island in the world, and it is the birthplace of Confederation for Canada.
The island was inhabited by the Mi’kmaq tribes for centuries; they named it: Epekwitk, meaning “Cradled on the waves.” It was first seen by Europeans in 1534 and was fought over by the French and English for 350 years until finally becoming the birthplace of Canada in 1864. Those are some facts.
However, there is another way to understand Prince Edward Island.
In 1908, Lucy Maud Montgomery published her book, “Anne of Green Gables”; a fictional account (today we’d call it Historical Fiction) of life on the island in the late 19th century, based on her early years growing up there.
The book was a huge success—selling 19000 copies in the first year. It has since been translated into 25 languages, sold more than 50 million copies and has been made into movies, musicals, cartoons, mini-series and radio shows. And it’s not the only “Anne” book; in fact there are 6 of them. Anne of Green Gables put Prince Edward Island on the map, so to speak.
It’s visited each year by 125,000 visitors. And while we say it’s “fiction”, it serves as more than just a story.
Former Governor General of Canada, Adreenne Clarkson (1999-2005) came to Canada as a refugee in 1941 with her family. She was lost in this brand new world. She read all of the “Anne” books and learned what it means to be “a Canadian.” She says, “L. M. Montgomery educated me at a very profound level about how Canada operated in a rural setting, with smart people, in the birthplace of Confederation.”
So I’ll leave it up to you: Facts or fiction—or both? On Prince Edward Island they just might be too hard to separate!
Get to know Jennifer Walstad
Jennifer Walstad is the District Academic Director for American Preparatory Schools. She spent many years growing up in Calgary, and is a huge fan of “Anne of Green Gables” and Prince Edward Island. She loves reading to her children and can’t wait for her daughters to love Lucy Montgomery’s books as much as she does.
Our One Minute Madness Interview with Jennifer
- Name a single food you can’t live without. – “Sunflower seeds”
- What time period would you like to live in? – “the 1920’s”
- What is your biggest pet-peeve? – “Leaving socks and shoes around the house.”
- What do you miss most about being a kid? – “Walking around barefoot”
- What’s your favorite book (aside from Anne of Green Gables)? – “Ben-Hur”
- Do you have any nicknames? – “Jen”
- How many siblings do you have? – “Four”
- Tell us three words that describe you. – “Loud, fast, efficient.”
- What was the last thing you bought? – “Cheerios”
- Who is the first person you call when you have had a bad day? – “My mom”
Best of the Best of the Best “Sir!”
CONFEDERATION CENTRE OF THE ARTS
– Confederation Centre of the Arts offers the best in Canadian Visual & Performing Arts. Canada’s National Memorial tot he Fathers of Confederation. Located in the heart of Historic Charlottetown.
ST. DUSTAN’S BASILICA
– The Cathedral Parish at St. Dunstan’s Basilica is a Roman Catholic community of believers. The locals strive to live that faith in mercy, justice and truth in the spirit of Christ. They try to be a community of hospitality, extending welcome to all.
– Marvel at the red sandstone cliffs and sandy dunes. Swim in crystal blue water warmed by the Gulf stream. These beaches attract thousands of people all over the world, and with good reason.
A NIGHT AT THE TRACK
– Be an owner for an evening, personal Island host, exclusive access to the paddock. Meet your horse and trainer before the race and discuss strategy, followed by a buffet dinner for two while you watch your horse race!
PEI NATIONAL PARK
– Discover the beauty of the Island’s North Shore. With several beaches and over 30 miles of hiking and cycling trails. Enjoy daily learning programs for all ages. Learn about Island culture through music and stories at evening campfires.
BASIN HEAD BEACH
– Basin Head is a day use park featuring a supervised white sand beach, play area, food on site. Oh, and be sure to listen for the “singing sands,” a slight squeak as you walk on the beach. *Dogs are welcome on the beach but have to be on a leash.
SPUDS, FUDGE, AND TALES
– Learn all things Potato! Pick a potato, make potato fudge and enjoy a potato lunch. Take the opportunity to learn from an experienced potato farmer about the industry.
DIGGING FOR DINNER
– Get your spade and bucket ready, it’s time to go clamming on Prince Edward Island. A local named Ron Perry loves to help others dig for these beloved soft and hard-shelled clams.
SEE THE LIGHTHOUSES
– With over 63 lighthouses to visit, you can go right up and watch the workings for yourself. Four of the lighthouses have converted into museums.
READ ANNE OF GREENE GABLES
– Go ahead, grab a chair or blanket with the book in tow and head for the beach.
Our Take Away
Wally still can’t believe that potatoes is the number one crop in Prince Edward Island. Looks like he will be making a stop at Spuds, Fudge, and Tales.
I remember the puffy sleeves Mathew got for Anne, and I remember how much I wanted puffy sleeves.
Eric wants to go back and eat a big, fat lobster in Charlottetown.