Winter in the Bay

An art and quilt exhibit and writing contest

As we look toward several months of winter weather and continued Covid-mandated contact restrictions, activities to promote social engagement are more important than ever. With the extent and nature of contact restrictions subject to change, and with the large rural and senior populations in St. Margaret’s Bay, isolation in this area is a significant concern. However, with the area consisting of a series of small, interconnected communities that take pride in being part of “the Bay,” community groups here also have an opportunity to make a real difference through relatively small grassroots activities to mitigate social isolation for our residents. A strong spirit of resourcefulness, volunteerism and care for neighbours is deeply embedded in our local culture, as is an appreciation of the creative arts.

Two-part project

Winter in the Bay is a two-part community project that has the potential to engage diverse community members and organizations. The first part is an art and quilt exhibit; the second part is a writing contest. The two are linked, in that the works of art and quilts will serve as inspiration for the writing pieces.

Part One: Art and Quilt Exhibit on the theme “Winter in the Bay”

The Community Enterprise Centre (CEC) has a relationship with the Peggy’s Cove Area Festival of the Arts (PCAFA). Since the CEC’s official opening in April 2018, member artists of PCAFA have exhibited their works on two walls, as part of the CEC’s rotating art and quilt gallery. This project is managed by PCAFA in partnership with the CEC. In September 2020, a built-in unit was added to a third wall of the CEC’s reception area, creating spots for three-dimensional art.

PCAFA artists are invited to display a piece of art on the broad theme of “Winter in the Bay” during the month of February 2021, as follows:

  1. Participating artists are asked to commit by January 15, 2021, and provide a good quality photograph of the art by January 22, 2021.
  2. Artists must agree to let a photograph of their work be included in the piece of writing, with credit to the artist and acknowledgement that the art was created first, as inspiration for the writing piece.
  3. Works need not be new or created for the exhibit, provided they fit the theme (works that are obviously Christmas-themed are not suitable).
  4. Works should be delivered to the CEC on January 30, at a designated time.
  5. The works may be two-dimensional or three-dimensional, and that information should be provided when the participation commitment is made.
  6. Artists are asked to provide a one- or two-paragraph piece of writing to accompany the work, describing their inspiration for the piece and/or how they see the work as illustrating the theme. This will be included as an appendix to the piece(s) of writing inspired by the work of art, as an illustration and celebration of how art inspires different experiences and interpretations.
  7. Works will be available for purchase, with sales handles by CEC staff.
  8. If a work sells during the month of February, it can be removed at the time of sale, since all art in the exhibit will have been photographed in advance.
  9. Art will be on display at the CEC throughout the month of February.
  10. In addition, works will also be shown on participating groups’ websites and social media. The CEC has around 30 member organizations, businesses and individuals, as well as ties to many other community entities. This offers significant outreach opportunities, even if the CEC’s opening hours and traffic are restricted in February.
  11. The quilt gallery at the CEC is separately managed through local quilters, and this group is also invited to display small quilts on the same theme, to be used as inspiration for written works and to be shown at the CEC and online, and also to be available for purchase.
  12. Contest organizers will ensure all works of art and quilts in the show have at least one writer using their work as inspiration.

More about the theme

Artists are invited to take an imaginative and broad view of “Winter in the Bay,” depicting outdoors, indoors, past, present or future, or even the idea of a winter getaway to somewhere warm.

Part Two: Writing contest on the theme “Winter in the Bay”

Using one of the exhibited art works on display at the CEC, community members will be invited to submit by February 15, 2021:

  1. A personal reflection (brief first-person essay) on the topic, maximum 350 words. The work of art/quilt chosen will serve as a broad source of inspiration for the personal reflection, and a photograph of the work will serve as the illustration for the piece of writing, with credit to the artist/quilter.
  2. A short story (fictional) on the topic, maximum 2,500 words. Again, the art/quilt chosen will serve as a broad source of inspiration for the story, and a photograph of the work will serve as the illustration for the story, with credit to the artist/quilter.
  3. There will be age categories for the writing contest, to allow all generations to participate.


Artists interested in having a piece of art in “Winter in the Bay”, please contact Beth Newman,, 902-821-2000.

Questions and suggestions? Contact Sharon Jessup Joyce,, 902-821-2130 or 902-471-0148.