The Place: Pictou, Nova Scotia
The Treasure: Pictou Lobster Carnival
This Sunday we headed to Pictou (population about 4000) in the north east part of the province for the annual Lobster Carnival which celebrates the end of the fishing season in the area – an event that started in 1934.
Pictou is a nice mix of old and new. Some great old buildings to take in if you’re in to that, which I happen to be. No pictures however because it feels weird to take pictures of someone’s house, but I’ll give over it. Too much nice architechture that should be photographed.
First things first – if you plan to go know this: parking is an experience. Every street we looked at and every parking area (and some that weren’t, I’m looking at you Mister-I-Parked-On-The-Crosswalk-Because-I’m-That-Important) seemed to be packed. People everywhere – GREAT for the festival, less so for parking. In truth we probably only spent 10 minutes looking for a place to park.
Our first stop was Grohmann Knives which will have it’s on NST entry in the near future. Short form – we’ve known about them for a long time and it was on our list to finally see in person. Great place, great knifemaker.
Next we walked down what I’ll just call Antique Car Road. Hundreds of antique cars from all eras. A couple exampels here:
After that we took a walk up to the Reptile Zoo presented by Maritime Reptile Adventures (http://www.maritimereptilezoo.com/) . Understandably they had a relatively few amount of reptiles since the festival takes place some 2 plus hours from their base of operations – snakes, a turtle, several lizards. What was interesting and informative is that they had the life expectancy along with the rest of the information (country of origin, etc). We did not know snakes have such a long life expectancy. Hopefully we can make a trip to their full zoo at Atlantic Playland and give them a spot on NST if we like what we see. Based on the short visit in Pictou I don’t think that’ll be an issue!
Next we walked towards the carnival, passing a little league baseball game in progress. That brought back a lot of memories. The carnival itself was, of course, aimed at children – the rollercoaster was particularly intimidating; reaching nearly eight feet in height with the usual ups and downs. We saw several kids walking around with very large stuffed animals. It was a very nice, family atmosphere through the whole event and the carnival caputred the feel of a larger amusement park very well.
From there we headed back to the Northumberland Fisheries Museum (http://www.townofpictou.ca/fisheries_museum.html) and took a quick go through there. The lobsters in the tank a sight to behold, two mammoth sized lobster, also a regular sized blue, and an orange lobster (looks cooked already!). I’d like to do a few entries on Nova Scotia’s museums because I don’t think they get the attention they deserve.
Once out of the museum we took in some of the live music that was playing while we ordered up some ribbon fries (basically thin continuous sliced potatoes deep fried) and a lobster sandwich to share. C’mon, it’s a Lobster Carnival – we had to! Oh the sacrifices we make for our little blog…. 😉
Unfortunately we had to leave after that and we missed the parade. We did not expect the magnitude of the event that we walked in to. It far exceeded what we expected to find in both amount of things to see and do, and in the number of people that showed up. The Lobster Carnival is a three day event and it’d be nice to take in more of the festivities.
The Pictou Lobster Carnival is an absolute must go to if you’re in the area when it’s on. Next year we plan to take in much more of it!
-Steph and John
Here is the current weather and a map to help you plan your trip:
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