Community spirit could be felt in the salty breeze off the Bay of Fundy as Harbourville hosted the High Tide Festival. The Harbourville Restoration Society fundraiser on Aug. 16 featured many fun activities and competitions, including a dunk tank, pie contest, scallop-shucking contest, lobster box races across the harbour at high tide and much more.
Perhaps one of the most remarkable results was in the pie contest. Without knowing who baked which pies, judges Howard Shantz, Warden Diana Brothers and Brian Van Rooyen tasted each. They ended up with a tie for first place. Restoration society summer student Ashly Weisner was called in to break the deadlock.
She made her selection but, somewhat ironically, the decision turned out not to matter. Restoration society president Beth Caldwell entered both of the pies, one pumpkin and one rhubarb strawberry.
“I love to make pies, it’s pretty exciting,” Caldwell said following the win.
This was only the second time she has entered a baking contest, the first being last year’s pie contest at the High Tide Festival. Caldwell said it was “pretty darn good” when the pies brought in $16 and $21 respectively at auction.
County of Kings chief administrative officer Tom MacEwan volunteered at the dunk tank. After taking a few plunges, he said the water, straight from the Bay of Fundy, was “really cold.”
Angela Melnychuk, society treasurer and one of the festival organizers, said the main purpose is to bring the community together and have fun. The festival also draws a lot of visitors from away. She said a tour bus was expected to arrive later in the afternoon.
“Some people are not used to coming to the shore,” she said. “It’s a bit of an adventure.”
Melnychuk said the society believes in “fun fundraising” and they brought the annual High Tide Festival back last year after a lengthy absence. The event helps cover expenses relating to community hall and the wharf, such as insurance. She said about half the board members are fishermen.