Thursday, October 27, 2016

Tales from the Alaska Highway, with Kathy Jessup. #FolkloreThursday #podcast

Kathy was raised in a remote village on the Alaska Highway in northern BC, but wanderlust has taken her far from her roots. She’s always loved telling tales. One day she stumbled upon the world of traditional storytelling, and she was hooked! Since then, Kathy’s performed original stories and world folktales in schools, libraries, concerts and festivals across Canada and internationally. Highlights include the Scottish International Story-telling Festival, a Nordic storytelling conference in Iceland, and most recently- sharing tales with school children in South Africa. Her stories have been published in various venues, and included on several CD anthologies.

In this podcast, we discuss growing up on the Alaskan Highway, Kathy’s family’s roots in the area, her father memories and work on the Alaskan Highway, and we focus on her upcoming storytelling show the “Alaskan Highway Road Show” celebrating the 75th anniversary of the highway.

Photo of Kathy Jessup and Dale Jarvis by Kelly L. Jones.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Workshop on how to document old buildings! Nov 3rd and 5th.

The Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador and Youth Heritage NL are co-organizing a workshop in field-recording for heritage buildings. The workshop will be lead by preservationist Emily Wolf and will cover field measurement (including US HABS standards), recording techniques, and documentary photography.

The workshop will take place in two sessions, from 7-9:30pm on Thursday, November 3, and from 11am-4pm on Saturday, November 5. The evening “classroom” session will take place at the Newman Building, 1 Springdale St., St. John’s. Techniques covered in the evening session will be practiced on-site during the afternoon session at the Squires Barn and Carriage House Registered Heritage Structure (part of MUN Botanical Garden on Mount Scio Road, St. John’s).

This workshop will be useful for architects and enthusiasts, folklorists, historians, or anyone interested in hands-on research in built heritage. The cost for this workshop is $10 and space is limited to 15 participants. No experience is necessary. Volunteers are encouraged to bring a camera (or a cell phone camera) to practice their architectural photography.

Warm drinks and snacks will be provided but do dress appropriately. The workshop will be rescheduled if the weather is uncooperative.

For more information contact Youth Heritage NL at or Michael at 709-739-1892 ext. 3.

Emily Wolf is a historic preservationist and lecturer in Boston Architectural College’s Master of Design Studies Program in Historic Preservation, teaching courses in architectural history and research and documentation. She formerly served as Architectural Historian/Assistant Survey Director at the Boston Landmarks Commission. A resident of St. John’s, she is a director of the Newfoundland and Labrador Historic Trust.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Workshop - Collecting Oral Histories around Anniversaries and Milestone events. Nov 9, Corner Brook.

“Collecting Oral Histories around Anniversaries and Milestone events: Digital collection methods of the stories and descriptions of artifacts in collections.”

Date: Wednesday, November 9, 2016; 9:00 am to 4:30 pm.
Location: Corner Brook, NL. Venue to be determined.

Collecting the oral history of an artifact is an important part of collections management. When people assemble at anniversaries and millstone event exhibitions opportunities to collect information on collections are created, and museums should be prepared to use these interactions with the public to collect and enhance collections records. The stories of veterans and people associated with artifacts should be properly recorded.

This workshop will provide information on the proper recording methods for oral history in museum settings. These histories will enable participants to enhance artifact records by recording stories on digital media. Participants will learn proper methods for digitizing audio and video recordings including the use of electronic devices, recording best practices and proper methods of digital storage. These recordings maybe used to enhance the display of artifacts.

Instructor for the Workshop: Dale Jarvis, Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador
Enrolment Limits: Maximum of 20
Registration fees: $85 for MANL members, $110 for non-members
Registration Deadline: November 1, 2016

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Tomboy Survival Guide - in conversation with Ivan Coyote

Ivan Coyote is the award-winning author of ten books, the creator of four short films, and has released three albums that combine storytelling with music. Ivan is a seasoned stage performer and long-time road dog, and over the last eighteen years has become an audience favourite at storytelling, writer's, film, poetry, and folk music festivals from Anchorage to Amsterdam. Ivan's 11th book, Tomboy Survival Guide, was released in the fall of 2016 with Arsenal Pulp Press. In this podcast, we discuss the writing process, performing, Ivan’s new book Tomboy Survival Guide, trans and queer stories shared after Ivan’s performances, and their latest projects.

Photo courtesy   

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Announcing the 12th Annual Heritage Places Poster Contest!

The 2016-2017 school year marks the 12th year of the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador’s Heritage Places Poster Contest.

In every community across Newfoundland and Labrador there are buildings, structures and lands that hold historical significance. They represent our past and need to be protected for our future. Talk to your students about these special places in their community and ask what they mean to them. Students are asked to create a poster themed after an existing heritage place (demolished buildings or recently constructed buildings will not be considered). They must also prepare a short written statement explaining the importance of their chosen place. Suggested lengths for this statement are as follows:

Primary (K-grade 3): 1-2 sentences Elementary (grades 4-6): 3-5 sentences
Junior High (grades 7-9): 1-2 paragraphs Senior High (grades 10-12): 2 paragraphs or up to a page

In addition to student prizes, the overall winner’s school will receive $750 and the three runners- up’s schools will receive $300 each.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact Andrea O’Brien at 1-888-739-1892.

Our website and our Facebook page @heritagefoundationnl are both great resources for students.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Wooden Boat Heritage 2016 - Heritage Skills

Heather Elliott (Youth Ambassador and Wooden Boat Board Member) and Crystal Braye (Wooden Boat Museum Folklorist).
Last week the Wooden Boat Museum of Newfoundland and Labrador hosted Wooden Boat Heritage 2016 which was a three day event focused on the celebration and use of wooden boats and traditional skills. There were speakers from across the world – Basque Country, Connecticut, New York, Washington, Scotland, Nova Scotia, and many parts of Newfoundland. The speakers focused on different elements of wooden boats and gave presentations on how reconstructed wooden boats can celebrate the past and renew interest an interest in maritime heritage, how wooden boats can be used in experiential learning and in tourism, and how wooden boats can be used to teach youth new skills they can use in many aspects of their lives.

Aside from the presentations about wooden boats there were also musicians who performed, and facilitators who moderated working groups to develop new ideas on how the Wooden Boat Museum should develop over the next few years. The highlight of Wooden Boat Heritage 2016 was the Heritage Skills Challenge in which participants, and youth volunteers learned how to use a variety of tradition tools and skills which would be used in building boats and fishing. The event took place in Petty Harbour and was organised in partnership with Fishing for Success. Here is a selection of photos from the event!
Terra Barrett of the Heritage Foundation learning how to knit nets.
Ema Kirbirkstis (Youth Ambassador) casting a net.
Facing off in the adze challenge.
Wooden Boat Museum Board Member Frank French and Eileen Matthews of Heritage New Perlican working together on the double ended saw.
Adam Green of Rock the Boat and Youth Ambassador Emma Lang face off in the splitting fish challenge.
Evelyn Ansel explaining how caulk a boat with oakum.
Youth Ambassador Lisa Daly tying a withe (wiff).
Rowing competition.
Which skill is your favourite? What would you like to learn?


Thursday, October 13, 2016

The Wren Boys of Dingle, with Aoife Granville. #FolkloreThursday

Aoife Granville is from Dingle, Co. Kerry (Ireland). A flute player, fiddler and traditional singer, she completed a PhD thesis in 2012 entitled at University College Cork entitled "We never died a winter yet" The Sráid Eoin Wrenboys of Dingle: Music, Community and Identity. Aoife has held lectureship posts in Music at UCC and Newcastle University (UK) and is currently working at the Folklore department at UCC. She has released two solo albums to date and is working on an Arts Council of Ireland funded project on traditional songs of The Schools Collection (Irish Folklore Commission) at present.

In this podcast, we talk about Dingle, growing up within a musical tradition, fife and drum groups, calendar customs, the routes taken by wren groups on St. Stephen’s day, parades, disguises, traditional tunes, straw hats, and the evolution of wren traditions in Ireland and Newfoundland!

Photo courtesy Aoife Granville/Facebook

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

A Life-Changing Experience: Memories of City of St. John’s Volunteers Booklet Launch

Lossie Trask, Linda Furey, Marie Ryall, Ruby Hann, Terra Barrett, Dale Jarvis, and Mayor Dennis O'Keefe at the booklet launch. 
On Tuesday the Heritage Foundation and the City of St. John’s Community Services Department launched the booklet A Life-Changing Experience: Memories of City of St. John’s Volunteers. The booklet launch took place in the Foran Green Room of City Hall at the Council Meeting. The five volunteers who were interviewed for the booklet came out and were treated to some snacks before being invited into the Council Meeting where the booklet and the women were recognized.

A Life-Changing Experience: Memories of City of St. John’s Volunteers is the first booklet in the Collective Memories Series produced by the Heritage Foundation. This booklet focuses on the experience of five City of St. John’s volunteers and their reflections and advice on volunteering in the community. The bulk of the work for this project was completed by Conservation Corps summer student Sarah Hannon who completed interviews, transcribed, and edited the booklet.

The volunteer booklet is part of the foundation’s Collective Memories Project. This project is an initiative of the Intangible Cultural Heritage Office of the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador, with funding provided by the Department of Children, Seniors, and Social Development. The Collective Memories Project invites seniors to record their stories and memories for sharing.

If you want to learn more you can head to to hear the full interviews or you can check out PDF here!

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Audio notes from the Wooden Boat Heritage 2016 Conference

Last week, the Wooden Boat Museum of NL hosted "Wooden Boat Heritage 2016." Heritage Foundation of NL staff and volunteers with Youth Heritage NL helped moderate a morning session on the final day where a series of questions were asked to participants.  They were asked:

  • What experiences could I create in my community? 
  • What resources and assets related to boats and boatbuilding reside in my community? 
  • Who has the necessary knowledge and skills? 
  • What skills, training, or assistance do you need to pull this off? What help do you need?

After an hour of discussion, each table reported back on the exciting and inspiring things they heard. Listen to the results here: