Freshness of the season encouraging time

Dave White
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Accompanying spring-like temperatures does serve as an encouraging juncture around and about; this time of year, that is.

The wind and blowing snow from the Gulf of St. Lawrence, admittedly, makes Bay of Islands a not-so-pleasant place to be in winter months like we’ve had this year. But, that is gone now almost, with the possible exception of a cooler Easter Sabbath that includes a trifecta of snow, rain and freezing rain forecast for Saturday.

The horse race to summer continues as warming seasonal southerly gales whipped the west coast this week. The ocean ice has begun breaking up, dislodged from its three-month grip in the arms of Bay of Islands and was being driven on favourable sou’easters into the Gulf of St. Lawrence.

The water had opened in the three-kilometre reach between McIvers Point, Woods Island and Frenchman’s Head as the winds hammered away Wednesday afternoon.

Fishers are gathering their gear and recreational boaters stand at the ready as Middle Arm and the south side of Humber Arm get swept free of clumpers and ballycaters in the late spring thaw. Fresh crab, lobster and spring herring harvests are expected to start in haste as more of the better weather prevails.

Also encouraging were at least a half dozen robins spotted foraging in the morning sun last weekend. Robins are a true sign of spring’s arrival, older folk claim, even as others locally claim to have seen robins at times all winter, however unusual that may be around here. But, they are here now. I have pictures.

Janelle tourney filling up

A full slate of 20 teams is again likely for the third annual Janelle Blanchard Memorial Scholarship volleyball tournament being at Templeton Academy in Meadows May 2-3.

Tournament organizers Lorna and Fabian Lovell have already registered 15 teams for the four-player coed event held to support a post-secondary scholarship fund awarded annually to honour the memory of the young varsity high-school athlete and north shore Bay of Islands community volunteer who suddenly died in 2012.

Back to defend its 2013 tournament championship is the team known as Ballin’.

Last year’s semifinalists, the Killer Bs, have yet to appear on this year’s contender’s roster.

4-H Rockets fly to top

The Summerside 4-H Rockets have a long and successful history with encouraging youth in Bay of Islands and this month they have added All-Canada honours for the club’s hall of merit.

Farm Credit Canada and 4-H Canada recently announced national winners for the Shout-Out for Ag! online video competition. Promoting agriculture careers and its objectives served as fodder for the dozens of video productions that made I to the judging phase of the competition.

Led by the 4-H Rockets, Newfoundland and Labrador garnered two video titles and corresponding prize amounts from a national awards package of $50,000.

The Rockets blasted into the winners circle with their video presentation on the reasons for desiring to pursue careers in agriculture. They won $2,750 for their efforts, money that can be put to good use supporting local 4-H programming.

The national winners named in each production category also included the I. Sullivan Memorial 4-H Club of Newfoundland and Labrador for their scope on what all Canadians can do to sustain feeding the planet.   

“Clubs from across Canada were asked to create a short video illustrating key topics, such as how 4-H has affected their lives, or what they envision for the future of agriculture,” the contest sponsors explained in a joint news release.

Hundreds of 4-H members from across Canada rose to the challenge to create and compete in the sponsored prize pool awarded for club winners nationwide.Some 20,000 online votes determined provincial winners, which then proceeded to evaluations from a national judging panel. From dozens of qualified entries, four national winners were selected, earning top scores for creativity, impact, and awareness of 4-H in Canada.

The winning  4-H contest videos can be seen online at The 4-H Canada creed stands for Head, Heart, Hands and Health. Thinking, believing, working and caring, all are worthy pursuits. Commendable.

Laurels, all. Do be having a Happy Easter.

Dave White welcomes your Bay of Islands news and events information

at  688-2003, or email at:

Organizations: Templeton Academy, Farm Credit Canada, Shout-Out for Ag

Geographic location: Bay of Islands, Woods Island, Middle Arm Canada Newfoundland and Labrador

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