While many trees – big and small – in Yarmouth couldn’t escape the wrath of Arthur, it turns out the Maudified houses, for the most part, stood their ground.
The 11 unique miniature houses, hand painted by Yarmouth area artists as homage to the late Yarmouth-born folk artist Maud Lewis, remained mostly intact during post-tropical storm Arthur, in spite of winds that exceeded 100-kilometres an hour.
“Nine of the houses had nil to minimal damage. We might be missing a couple of sponsor signs, but that is not a problem,” says Wendy Majestic, creator and chairperson of the Maudified Houses committee for the Friends of the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia Western Branch.
“One of the two houses that did sustain damage was the Jennie Lamont house, sponsored by Kersen [IMO Foods] that apparently was found being blown across Main Street,” says Majestic. “It was retrieved by a passerby and grocer Fred Emin, who both then wedged it up against a back fence out of harm’s way.”
The Maudified houses are located in key locations within the Town and Municipality of Yarmouth, and have been embraced by locals and tourists alike as a unique summertime attraction.
One house that couldn’t escape the brunt of Arthur was the one painted by Maggie Mandel, and sponsored by the Yarmouth Rug Hookers, that was located at the entrance to the Leif Erikson Park at Cape Forchu. This one was broken apart.
“But Ed and Roanne Collier went out Saturday night and rescued the house,” explains Majestic. “Since then Ed has put the house back together, replacing a few broken pieces of wood. We will be taking it out to Maggie’s studio, so that she can touch up the paint and the shells.”
Majestic is thankful to many people who exercised preventative measures on some of the homes to minimize any damage or who assessed any damage following the storm. This included Mariners Centre manager Gil Dares, Yarmouth County Museum director Nadine Gates, the staff at the International Ferry Terminal, Fred Emin, Ivan Blades, Barrie MacGregor, Sandra Phinney and Ed and Roanne Collier.
The Maudified Houses will be auctioned off on Sunday, Sept. 14, at Th’YARC. All proceeds will benefit programs at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia Western Branch in downtown Yarmouth. On the night of the auction doors will open at 6 p.m., with the auction running from 7-9 p.m. Tickets will soon be on sale for $10 each. Door prizes – including a cruise for two with Nova Star Cruises – a cash bar and complimentary finger foods will be offered at the event.