The Cabot Trail Writers Festival is produced by the Cabot Trail Writers Festival Society, a registered Nova Scotia non-profit society. Our Joint Stock Registry number is 3253532.
Our volunteer Board of Directors comprises:
- Barrie Carnat
- Marcelle Lavoie
- Jeannette Mac Donald
- Gary Walsh
- Mary Ann Wilson
- Sandy Balcom
The festival was inspired by an idea from Gary Walsh and Jeannette Mac Donald, who saw how their friends and neighbours were drawn to a reading they proposed to the St. Ann’s Bay Book Club, that was staged in a local community hall. For our first two years, we operated as a committee of the St. Ann’s Bay Development Association (SABDA), a registered non-profit community association whose goals include community and economic development. The relationship gave us the time we needed to find our way, and we appreciate the opportunity.
In our first year, the Festival Committee included Gary and Jeannette, Russell Colman, Loreto Doyle, William Palander, and Susan Zettell—interestingly, all members of the St. Ann’s Bay Book Club. In year two, the Committee was Loreto Doyle, Jeannette Mac Donald, Francis Ryan, and Gary Walsh. In both of those years, Mary Ann Wilson volunteered as our Volunteer Coordinator. It was only natural that she join us on the Board when we incorporated our Society in 2011. That year, Francis Ryan stepped down (thank you, Francis, for your work getting our student out-reach going), and Charles Thompson stepped up.
Unparalleled access to exciting authors in an intimate setting designed to inspire.
To create an event at which writers of all skill levels can learn from each other, and inspire new authors; to draw readers into a deeper appreciation of the arts and artists of the world of writing; to expose our audience to a broader selection of styles and techniques; to directly encourage and reward new works; to spend “quality time” with fellow writers and readers!
To conceive, devise, create, and present an annual celebration of writing, reading, and the literate arts, as well as adjunct events with the same aims presented throughout the year.
To further the enjoyment and practice of writing through exposure, celebration, and education, by the means of an annual festival, other events featuring writing or learning opportunities, and direct commissioning of new works.
The Cabot Trail is one of the most famous roads in the world, and deservedly so. It wends its way through forests and hills, up mountains and along the Atlantic coast, across wind-swept plains and over rushing rivers, along-side an inland sea and around calm salt-water inlets. Our own North River venues are sited in one of those forested areas, beside and overlooking the famous-for-fishing North River. In fall, the full glory of autumn leaves and the mild climate of Cape Breton make this place simply irresistable. And we haven’t even mentioned the welcoming people, their ancient cultures, the glorious local farm-fresh food, the soft sea air, …
We couldn’t have designed a better spot to trade tales and hatch plots. We hope to share our good fortune with many of you, this year and in years to come.