October 24, 2009

A couple of final thoughts on the CBC Radio2 Great Canadian Song Quest #GCSQ: It’s been a blast. I’ve enjoyed all levels of this – from the initial photo submissions, the blogs and the on-air campaigns. Excellent fun.

I guess the next thing is to congratulate the winners. Be sure to listen as Tom Allen works through the list on Monday morning. I’m looking forward to hearing the final results…and eventually, the songs that come.

The CBC is giving us a gift. Good job all.

Robb out…from Carter’s Beach, Nova Scotia.


Vote For Carter’s Beach

October 13, 2009

sqlogo-120x120Nova Scotia is an incredibly beautiful province.  It would be hard to argue otherwise.   And, I really appreciate all the support for Carter’s Beach in the Great Canadian Song Quest #GCSQ.  We’re at the voting stage now so it’s really important that you surf over to CBC Radio 2  and pick your favourite Nova Scotian singer(s) and vote for Carter’s Beach.  Do this once a day, ‘til further notice okay?!  Tell your friends to do the same because only one spot in NS will be selected.  Sure would be nice if it could be Carter’s Beach.

I mean, it’s clear that Carter’s Beach should represent Nova Scotia.  It’s a pristine mix of granite, spruce, pure white sand and the most beautiful slice of salt water on the east coast.  Who should immortalize Carter’s Beach in song?  Old Man Luedecke, Joel Plaskett , Meaghan Smith, Jimmy Rankin, or Sloan?? I don’t know who to endorse.  Who do you pick?

It’s important that you vote everyday and remind your friends to do the same.  Vote for Carter’s Beach and the musical genius of your choice.   And, again…thank you so much.  I owe you a lobster for helping push us through to this new level!  Oh, and I hope to get down the shore to take some fresh photos for the blog and Facebook page.  And, listen for me on Thursday morning, Oct 15th…CBC Radio 2.  I’ll be plugging Carter’s Beach.  Take care.

Carter’s Beach Podcast

October 6, 2009

Treasure HuntNothing too meaty today.  

Do you remember, as a kid, waiting for Christmas morning…or your birthday? Yeah, you do. You’re not that old and cranky. Cranky maybe…but not old. Sam, at age 9, has near been beside himself waiting to hear our bit for Carter’s Beach in this weeks’ CBC Radio 2 Great Canadian Song Quest Podcast #GCSQ (<—that’s a hash tag, yes, that little thing).

I’m too cheap to purchase a “space upgrade” and directly upload the mp3 file to this blog.  Best I can do (and afford) is to link you through to the CBC’s Podcast page. Click here to listen to this week’s podcast. Sam is remarkably sweet and handsome eh? We should have our own CBC Radio 2 show. You know, I’ve got 4 boys who are all groomed and ready for national radio. Me? I’ve been ready forever.

I really appreciate all of the comments and good will.  I’ve even heard from some of the other Song Quest bloggers, like lilizohar.   Very nice person…Algonquin Provincial Park looks near as nice as Nova Scotia.  

This is the final week to nominate a specific spot or region in Canada. Voting begins next week – so, I’d really love it if you would swing over to the official CBC Radio 2 Song Quest Page  – hit the red box…click the map of Nova Scotia. Find the text box at the top right of the little grey box…type in CARTER’S BEACH.

So, thanks.  Carter’s Beach is what I would call a “long shot” for Nova Scotia.  Unless there is a huge late rally I have a feeling that Carter’s Beach will be giving way to other perhaps more notable NS locations like Citadel Hill in Halifax, The Annapolis Valley or Cape Breton.  I remain hopeful.  

Join the Carter’s Beach Facebook Group here.  Take care!

Carter’s Beach – Finishing School For The Soul

October 2, 2009
Carter's Beach ~ Finishing School For The Soul

Carter's Beach ~ Finishing School For The Soul

I didn’t plan on all of this. Confession: I’m not much for fine print and don’t always read the instructions. Originally, I thought I was entering some sort of photo contest with CBC Radio 2.

Now, I’m an advocate. A lobbyist. Even got this blog about Carter’s Beach. Got a Twitter account #GCSQ and a pile of new pals with this Facebook Group Page. Join us. Heck, I’ve even recorded a CBC Radio 2 Podcast with folks in Toronto. You’ll hear my 9 year old son Sam (pictured in my original photo/post) and I on the podcast next week. It should be up on Monday, October 5th. I’ll add the link.

Thank you for your kind and encouraging comments. I’ve received umpteen emails urging me forward in this. You people are nice. I see we believe and hope for the same good things in this country. Canadian awesomeness!

Carter’s Beach is a sort of finishing school for the soul. Best part is? No high brows, no fees and you park where you want. Nova Scotia is like that. Just “be”… in Nova Scotia. No panic attacks, not much traffic and you own the beach. Do you have any idea how beautifully refreshing that is?

I grew up in New Brunswick and jumped at a glorious opportunity to move to BC in the early 1990s. Work, of course…new and exciting work had called my name and I answered. My adventurous wife and I drove across the country…in the hopeful yet grey month of March.

Highway 17 in northern Ontario in…in…March. I’ll say no more. The prairies were not so hot either, as I recall. I will never forget this though; after 5 days of frost heaves and drifting snow -dropping down into the Fraser Valley to behold green grass. Truth is, the grass is always greener on the other side of Canada. It’s always green in Vancouver. Never wore a coat the whole time I lived there.

Vancouver is likely the most beautiful city in the world. It was and remains splendid. For me, just too many people everywhere I wanted to be. We left Canada’s greenest city 13 years ago and have fashioned out a new life in small town Nova Scotia. I love it. Vote for Carter’s Beach. It is just one sweet sandy retreat among dozens along Nova Scotia’s South Shore.

Carter’s Beach – Nothing Has Changed But Time

September 29, 2009

Carter's Beach From Above - Linda Ross Photo

Carter's Beach From Above - Linda Ross Photo

Last time out, I parked on a blanket for at least an hour and considered what Champlain and deMonts might have discussed as their square-rigged vessels creaked into the bay over 400 years ago.  It was cold water in May 1604, and it’s still cold water today…so much for global warming. It’s cold water year ’round. It looks like it should be warm but it ain’t. Regardless, Carter’s Beach – this shoreline paradise warms you from the inside out. Thanks to Linda Ross for the amazing photo!

Carter’s Beach is situated in southwest Nova Scotia near the community of Port Mouton.  It’s about 90 minutes from Halifax. You know you’re there when the speed limit on Highway 103 (Lighthouse Route) drops you down to 50 KPH.   Easy eh?   Not much signage, so you’ve got to have your wits about you.  So, if you’re coming from Halifax – heading southwest, watch for the little road sign “Southwest Port Mouton”.  Follow it down past the fish plant…bear left at the fork.  Carter’s Beach is at the end of the road.  Park anywhere you want.  Prepare to suck in the most unforgettably beautiful stretch of coastal goodness anywhere.   

Like I’ve said, Carter’s Beach is a secret though certainly worthy of immortalizion in song.  Hey, that’s what this is all about.  Thirteen locations – one for each Province and Territory in Canada, will be selected and a Canadian songwriter commissioned to write a song.  It’s the CBC Radio 2 Great Canadian Song Quest.  Please go here Hit the “Click Here To Start” button.  Dead centre, click on the little map of Nova Scotia.  Top right, where it says, “Suggest Your Own Unique Place”, type in CARTER’S BEACH.  That’s it.  Gee, I think you can vote 13 times a day – once for each Province/Territory.  You can even vote for locations all over Canada (after you’ve voted for Carter’s Beach). 

Let me know you’ve been here.  Leave a comment or thought…memory or good wish.  If you want, I’ll even drive you there so you can see firsthand what I’m pointing to.  (We’ll have to listen to CBC Radio 2 in the minivan en route to Carter’s Beach).  Hard to put it into words but Carter’s Beach is unparalleled as a natural wonder; seven sweet crescent beaches, an ecologically unique dune system – a place for imagination and wonder – where the water’s too cold, the past is part of everyday life and nothing has changed but time.

Here We Go!

September 28, 2009
12 year old Jonathan at Carter's Beach, NS

12 year old Jonathan at Carter's Beach, NS

The CBC Radio 2 Song Quest is up and running.  I’m overwhelmed at the response to my photo of Sam at Carter’s Beach.  So far, my picture has received a pile of ‘recommendations’ and, it may still lead the pack among all the fantastic photos from across Canada.  

This is a very broad and far reaching contest and I have no clue how this will all unfold.  Heck, I’m not even sure I understand the contest.  I also fear my wee push for Carter’s Beach, NS will fade to the background as wise, seasoned bloggers begin to rally for the more lavish or historically significant locations in other parts of Nova Scotia.  Not to take anything away from my entry, it’s just that I feel like small potatoes in real big stew pot.   Alas, I’ll do what I can.  If you’ve happened by this blog – please send me an email with your ideas or comment below.  How do I muster support for Carter’s Beach?  Will you help me?  Please?? 

I believe I need to build a case for Carter’s Beach – a creative case for support.  In time, Canadian songwriters will be selected and commissioned to write songs inspired by or about each location selected  – so 13 new songs about a spot in each Province and Territory.   My goal is to have Carter’s Beach selected as the location for Nova Scotia.   Oooh, that’s a toughie because there are brilliant and worthy communities at every turn; down every crooked road in Nova Scotia. 

I could have submitted photos of any number of NS landmark locations.  Carter’s Beach just happens to be my favourite exotic, natural and noteworthy pick for the province.   If you’ve visited Carter’s, you know what I mean when I say ‘tropical’.  If those wily spruces were palms…you’d be in the Caribbean.  No lie. 

So, as this CBC Radio 2 Song Quest begins, I trust you’ll join me in this journey to wherever it leads.  I’ll be posting often so be sure to check in with me from time to time.  I appreciate all support and am open to suggestions and recommendations.  All comments welcomed. 

Find me on Facebook and Twitter.  Let’s hear it for Carter’s Beach, NS!!

More Photos of Carter’s Beach

September 23, 2009

I’ve got a zillion photos of this stunning stretch of sand.  Thought you’d enjoy seeing a few pictures of Carter’s Beach, Nova Scotia.

Carter’s Beach, Nova Scotia

September 23, 2009

I’ve seen a lot of beach in my time and Carter’s Beach, near Port Mouton, is the most spectacular stretch of pure white sand anywhere in Nova Scotia. It is not a public beach in the sense that it is a Provincial Park. There are no flashy highway signs pointing the way; no bins to dump your garbage or recyclables…not even any formal parking lot.

Perhaps, that’s what I love best about Carter’s Beach. It’s not a public place at all. Most of the folks who live along the South Shore of Nova Scotia know of this hidden gem and reverently speak of it in hushed tones so as not to alert the CFA’s (the Come From Aways).  Carter’s Beach is located up the shore from the Kejimkujik National Park Seaside Adjunct.  I’m told it’s an easy hike to the park along the shore.  The thing is, once I step foot on Carter’s Beach there is no need to venture any further.  It’s enough to drop the blanket and sigh that sigh that speaks to the world, “I have arrived”.

It’s easy to spend the day and thankfully, I don’t live far away. You’re never more than a 1/2 hour drive from the Ocean from any point in Nova Scotia. You may not know this either – that Nova Scotia has more shoreline than California. That’s worth boasting about. My kids love Carter’s Beach because there are rocks and dunes, crabs and critters at every turn. Carter’s Beach is alive with all the wonder my four boys can manage. No question, Carter’s Beach is an easy pick as one of the most delicious locations in the country.  Carter’s Beach deserves a song.

  Treasure Hunt