Downhome magazine only has space for a mere fraction of the great stories sent to us by readers. Luckily, they're all available here. You'll find fond reminiscences about the past and personal experiences to which we can all relate.
On July 1st -- Canada Day -- 2012, the tiny outport of Grates Cove, Newfoundland saw its population nearly double as guests from as far away as Palo Alto, California arrived for the wedding of "come-from-aways" Jennilee Harley and Kyle McConnell-Sedore. Jennilee, ... click to read moreOn July 1st -- Canada Day -- 2012, the tiny outport of Grates Cove, Newfoundland saw its population nearly double as guests from as far away as Palo Alto, California arrived for the wedding of "come-from-aways" Jennilee Harley and Kyle McConnell-Sedore. Jennilee, originally from Ontario and a recent graduate of the Faculty of Pharmacy at MUN, and Kyle, her high-school sweetheart from Ontario, fell in love with Grates Cove after Jennilee's parents purchased a summer home there in 2006. The residents of Grates Cove opened their doors and hearts for the young couple, providing accommodations for guests in their homes, a church hall, an old schoolhouse and the Fishermen's Recreation Centre.
The weather, in true Newfoundland style, showed us how interesting it can be. Saturday night found us without power after a rare and spectacular thunderstorm swept over Grates Cove, forcing a planned outdoor rehearsal to be held inside by candlelight. The day of the wedding started out with cloud and rain but soon transformed into the best kind of day Newfoundland can offer. Brilliant sunshine and a cloudless sky left unsuspecting guests smiling but sunburned. The wedding took place on a rocky hillside overlooking the Flat Rocks and Trinity Bay. Local resident and artist Terrence Howell and his four-wheeler chauffeured both the bride and her 97 year old grandfather, Ralph Harley, from Woodstock, New Brunswick, to the wedding site. After the ceremony, Terrence toured the bride and groom throughout the village where they were greeted with cheers and a shotgun salute, as is the tradition in Grates Cove. Even the whales arrived in time for the wedding with a humpback surfacing close-by while the vows were being spoken.
Beyond Baccalieu Café was the site for a pot-luck reception after the wedding and it was a feast, as both local residents and guests from away arrived with their arms brimming over with dishes such as moose pie, fresh lobster, crab, fish and brewis, cod au gratin, fish cakes, salmon, turkey, salads and desserts too numerous to mention. After the supper, the whole community gathered at The Fishermen's Recreation Centre for a wedding dance celebration. Even the bride, who is the trumpet player for the popular St. John's band, Funky Dory, joined in on the musical fun as she performed with her brother and best man, Trevor Harley on drums, her parents and fellow musicians who travelled from Ontario to provide an evening of old time rock and roll dancing.
Everyone in Grates Cove made a special effort to ensure that the town was ready for this event. Signs were painted, picnic tables and fences were freshly stained, grass was cut, gardens were blooming and fishermen provided boat tours. Meadus' Take-Out accomplished what must be a record for a chip truck when they served eighty fish and chip dinners in a two hour period the night before the wedding. Words cannot express the gratitude and joy felt by the bride and groom and their families for the hospitality, generosity, friendship and unbeatable fun that springs from the people of Grates Cove, Newfoundland.