Volunteering makes me happy

One of the greatest pleasures, since moving to Nova Scotia, here in Canada 8 years ago, has been the enjoyment integrating into the community via non-profit organizations, festivals and events  in our area. I am PASSIONATE about what Nova Scotia has to offer tourism. Over the years I’ve volunteered, fundraised, done publicity and media, chaired or just been an extra pair of hands for some great local events or places such as, The Settlers Museum, Mahone Bay Wooden Boat Festival, Mahone Bay Classic Boat Festival, Mahone Bay Father Christmas Festival, Mahone Bay Wooden Boat Society, Mahone Bay Civic Marina, Mahone Bay Pirate Festival, Growing Green Festival and the Friends of Oak Island Society.

ALL these organizations run on the goodness and freewill of unpaid volunteers. Without them our festivals and events would not thrive and would soon become obsolete. They still do… the struggle to maintain volunteers is a constant one so please consider offering to be an extra pair of hands or to be involved and pre-event organizing. These events NEED YOU!

I digress…

My biggest integration at the moment is as a founding director of the wonderful “Friends of Oak Island Society”. We formed our non-profit group to promote and educate people on Oak Island and it’s mystery and we work closely with Dan Blankenship and the Michigan Group (equal partners in Oak Island Tours inc which are the current treasure hunters) to provide monthly tours to the public from June until September. It’s the only opportunity the public now have to set foot on the island. Oak Island is the site of the worlds longest running treasure hunt. The island is private but hundreds of thousands of people from all over the world are fascinated by the story and the many theories surrounding it. Is it Knights Templar via Henry Sinclair,  Spanish treasure, Sir Francis Bacon or is there nothing there at all? But there IS something there, an extensive huge network of flooding systems and tunnels… millions of dollars have been spent but yet the island has not given up her mystery.

Today I am out on the island again. We have an awesome visitors centre we resurrected, all hands on deck. One day I even turned up to help out and found 89 year old Dan Blankenship up on the roof with hammer and nails laying the roofing. So today I’ll do my session in the visitors centre and enjoy watching people from all over the world, descend on us and then go out for the 2 hour guided walking tour around the island (lots of exercise!!) to all the places of significance. It’s great exercise and I never grow tired of listening to our awesome tour guide Charles Barkhouse, share his knowledge.

Enjoy your weekend!

C xxxxxxx

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3 thoughts on “Volunteering makes me happy

  1. I have stopped by Oak Island twice in the past year, which is not easy because I live in Ontario. Both times there was nothing to see but a sign that said “private property” at the entrance to the causeway. I suppose one must coordinate with a guided tour that happens sometimes but that is difficult if one lives far away.

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    • Hi Bob- it is indeed private property and not open to the public. The disbanded Oak Island Tourism Society offered a few tours during Explore Oak Island Days once a year but when they folded the society we worked with the owners of Oak Island to bring regular tours throughout the summer to the public. A small group of us founded the Friends of Oak Island Society and volunteer many hundreds of hours every year for free (just because we love the mystery etc). We set 4 or 5 weekends of tours every year and post them on our website http://www.friendsofoakisland.com where anyone can purchase a ticket in advance or just turn up on a tour date and pay at the causeway. All money raised goes straight back into the tours for signage, safety equipment, improving the visitors centre, insurance and future projects…

      If you click on the yellow image above you will see that our final tours of the year are at the end of September and in the New Year, once we have met with the owners and partners in the island, will set new tour dates for 2013.

      We can also try and accommodate private tours (as long as we are asked well in advance)…

      Please take a look at a few clips from the tour on Sunday…. its a great 2 hour tour indeed, full of information 🙂

      http://southshorenow.ca/newsnowclips/play.php?vid=1828

      C xxxx

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