Living Heritage

Living Heritage is about people who are engaged in the heritage and culture sector, from museum professionals and archivists, to tradition bearers and craftspeople - all those who keep heritage alive at the community level. We talk about their work, their passions, and the day-to-day safeguarding of culture and tradition.
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Living Heritage




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Now displaying: 2015
Dec 29, 2015

Robert Chafe is a playwright based in St. John’s, whose work has been seen across Canada, the UK, Australia and in the United States. He is the author of seventeen stage scripts and co-author of another eight. He was shortlisted for the Governor General’s Award for Drama for Tempting Providence and Butler’s Marsh in 2004, and won the award for Afterimage in 2010.  He has been writer in residence at Artistic Fraud, Playwrights Atlantic Resource Centre, Playwrights Workshop Montreal, Forest Forge Theatre, (Hampshire, UK), and Memorial University of Newfoundland, and a guest instructor at Memorial University of Newfoundland, Sir Wilfred Grenfell College, and The National Theatre School of Canada.  On this episode, we talk about how Robert began writing plays, how to write about history and local characters.  We also discuss several of Robert’s plays, the research behind them, and the community response to them.  

Dec 22, 2015

Dianne Carr (nee Vokey) is a Spaniard's Bay native who recently "resettled" in the community after retiring from teaching.  Diane became involved with Spaniard's Bay Heritage Society two years ago. Her father was one of the founding members of the society and she decided she would like to carry on his legacy and give back to the community by getting involved with the summer programming and helping to promote the small museum. We discuss Dianne’s memories of growing up in Spaniard’s Bay, her love of and passion for heritage, and her work with the Spaniard’s Bay Heritage Society including their heritage walks and the community museum.

Dec 17, 2015

Terra Barrett is a folklore masters student at Memorial University who holds a BA in Folklore/French from Memorial University and is currently completing her M.A. in public and applied folklore.  Terra is completing a workterm with the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador as part of her M.A. program.  Her research interests include foodways, customs, material culture and public folklore.  In this episode, we discuss Terra’s oral history work in Petty Harbour-Maddox Cove, how to conduct oral history interviews, how to put together a booklet and host a launch, and Terra reads several excerpts from the booklet.

Dec 10, 2015

For years, Marnie Parsons studied, taught, reviewed, and edited poetry and children’s literature.  In 2000, shortly after moving to St. John’s, she began learning letterpress printing from book artist Tara Bryan, and established Running the Goat Books and Broadsides. Initially an occasional imprint, Running the Goat is now a full-time printing and publishing operation, specializing in limited-edition handmade books and fine trade books with a Newfoundland and Labrador emphasis. We discuss letterpress printing, where to source materials and equipment, the Running the Goat print shop, and current and future projects.

Dec 3, 2015

Ralph Barrett  was born in Upper Island Cove and is founding member of the Avalon Sail Squadron who served as the Commander of the Avalon for 4 years and was inducted into the Volunteer Hall of Fame as a result of his work with numerous organizations.  Ralph is also a painter and has an avid love of fossils.  We discuss Ralph’s memories of growing up in Upper Island Cove, Conception Bay North, including chores, children’s games and activities, nicknames to distinguish families with the same surnames, and folk beliefs. Ralph also explains Teak (Taig) Day, and describes Bonfire Night.

Nov 26, 2015

Catharyn Andersen is an Inuk from Nunatsiavut in northern Labrador.  She is the Special Advisor to the President on Aboriginal Affairs at Memorial University.  Before joining Memorial, she worked with the Small Craft Harbours program with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans.  She was the Director of the Torngâsok Cultural Centre, the cultural arm of the Nunatsiavut Government, from 2003 to 2008, and also worked as the Inuttitut Language Program Coordinator with the cultural centre.  She is an alumna of Memorial University. In this episode, we talk about Catharyn’s position as Special Advisor, her work with the Torngâsok Cultural Centre, aboriginal language and cultures, and the construction of an aboriginal house at Memorial University’s St. John’s campus.

Nov 19, 2015

Born and raised in Iran, Saeedeh Niktab arrived in Canada in January 2014. Having survived the brutal winter of that year, as a master’s student of Folklore, she has started to explore the mysterious land of Newfoundland and learn about its rich culture. Back in Iran, she finished her bachelor in Computer Engineering, but her life-long passion for art led her into Art Philosophy as her first master’s in Iran and later in Folklore in Canada. As a member of Iranian community in St. John’s, she has developed a special interest in Folklore in diasporic communities; especially the relationships between identity, beliefs and foodways.  Raised by a family for whom Iranian music was of great value, Hadi started to learn Iranian music by playing Setar when he was thirteen. He attended music classes of some outstanding masters of Iranian music between 1999 and 2009. After finishing his BMus degree in 2009 (University of Tehran), and his first M.A in art studies in 2012 (University of Tehran), he decided to pursue a Master’s in Ethnomusicology at MUN, where he thinks his ideas and interests will finally find their home! We talk about Iranian culture including customs, festivals, and foodways, the difference between the north and south parts of the country, New Year’s celebrations, children’s games, and their Master’s research.

Nov 12, 2015

Kimberly Orren is one of the founding directors of Fishing For Success, Inc. at Island Rooms of Petty Harbour, and currently serves as its Executive Director. Fishing For Success is a not-for-profit that aims to teach youth and tourists about the culture of Newfoundland and Labrador through the establishment of a traditional family inshore fishing premises. We talk about her first memories of fishing, science education, getting kids interested in fishing, and everything from caplin and sharks to traditional fishing marks.

Nov 6, 2015

Nicole Penney is a folklorist and archivist living and working in St. John’s, Newfoundland. She holds a BA in Folklore / English Literature and an MA in Public Folklore from Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador. On this episode, we talk all about digitizing archival records, with tips for community museums and archives, as well as private individuals, about how to best digitize old photographs, print, video, and audio materials.

Oct 29, 2015

Jo Shawyer is a cultural geographer who taught in the Department of Geography at MUN for many years.  Her special interest is the study of cultural landscapes.  Jo has researched the tradition and structure of a farming landscape, the impact of an expanding urban area on the adjacent rural farmscape, the arrival of a military landscape in St John's during World War II, and, currently, the landscape of property in downtown St John's.  We talk about cultural geography, what it is, and how Jo started in the field.  We also discuss historic and cultural landscapes, sense of place, the history of Churchill Park’s development, and what role geographers will play in the future.

Oct 22, 2015

Hazel Ouano Alpuerto is a Filipino-Canadian living in St.John's. She is a psychiatric registered nurse  by profession, and works with Eastern Health with Mental Health and Addictions. Hazel is also is the Philippines Honorary Consul General, whose role it is to oversee fellow nationals requiring assistance.  She is also a recipient of the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Award.  We talk about Hazel’s move to Newfoundland, her work as the Philippines Honorary Consul General, and Philippine culture and traditions including pig roasts, Christmas traditions, and the vibrant local Philippine community.

Oct 15, 2015

Crystal Braye is a folklorist with the Wooden Boat Museum of Newfoundland and Labrador. She holds a bachelor of arts in cultural anthropology from Wilfrid Laurier University and a masters in public folklore from MUN. Since 2012, she has travelled around the province learning from boat builders and fishermen to enhance the museum's collections and exhibits. Audio and video recordings, photographs,  and boat design and construction details are archived and exhibited online and at various locations across the province - including the Wooden Boat Museum headquarters in Winterton. We talk about the history and development of the museum, its programs to document and safeguard traditional boatbuilding skills, work on Gander River boats, bully boats, taking the lines of boats, and the organization’s annual wooden boat conference.

Oct 1, 2015

Gary Green is a past president of both the Crow's Nest Officer's Club and the Crow's Nest Military Artifacts Association which jointly administer the Crow's Nest National Historic Site of Canada. He has written journal articles on the Crow's Nest and has contributed to books on the role of St. John's and the Royal Canadian Navy in the Battle of the Atlantic 1939-1945. Gary and his wife Ruth, Collections Manager for the Crow's Nest Military Artifacts Association, conduct research in both national and provincial archives and museums. We talk about the history of the Crow’s Nest, its collection of WWII-era gunshield art, the club’s U-boat periscope, the preservation challenges of maintaining the collection, and stories from the club’s colourful past.

Sep 24, 2015

Dave Paddon is a writer and performer of recitations. He is originally from Northwest River, Labrador and is descended from two generations of pioneer doctors and nurses who lived and worked in Labrador.  He currently lives in St.John’s and makes his living as a pilot for Air Canada.  We discuss Dave’s childhood in Northwest River, his family’s history in Labrador as doctors and nurses, his parents’ involvement in World War II, and his involvement with recitations and the Stage to Stage performances. Dave recites The Twelve which is a recitation he wrote himself about a small snowmobile of twelve horsepower.

Sep 17, 2015

Julie Pomeroy has been the Heritage Programs and Services Coordinator for Portugal Cove-St. Philip’s since the fall of 2012 and has also been a member of the Heritage Committee in Logy Bay- Middle Cove- Outer Cove for the past 5 years.  Julie graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Geography from MUN and has completed a number of workshops with MANL (Museum Association Newfoundland and Labrador) and ANLA (Association of Newfoundland and Labrador Archives).  We discuss Julie’s introduction to heritage work, her work as a Heritage Programs and Services Coordinator, the settlement of Portugal Cove-St. Philip’s, family history, and community museums and archives.

Sep 10, 2015

Mary Ellen Wright has been the Professional Development and Outreach Officer (aka archives advisor) for the Association of Newfoundland and Labrador Archives (ANLA) for the last fifteen years. She has a BA in history from Dalhousie University, a master’s from St. Mary’s University and has also studied history at Memorial. Prior to coming to Newfoundland she worked at the provincial archives in Halifax, N.S.: she was a contract archivist in various institutions around St. John’s before starting with ANLA in December of 2000.  Mary Ellen’s job with ANLA has taken her to archives and museums from Nain to Grand Bank.  We talk all things archives, from the donation of garbage bags filled with papers to the need for accessibility, as Mary Ellen gives advice to anyone hoping to start an archives.

Sep 3, 2015

Allison Bennett is from Mount Pearl and graduated with a Master of Arts (in History) from Memorial University in October 2014. She is currently completing her Bachelor of Education (Intermediate/Secondary) at Memorial and will graduate this fall. Allison is currently employed as the Centennial Celebrations Coordinator at Admiralty House Communications Museum and is organizing and preparing events for HM Wireless Station’s 100th anniversary September 2015.  Originally hailing from Saskatchewan, Carla Watson completed her Masters in Public History at the University of Western Ontario in London, Ontario. She is currently the Museum Manager for Admiralty House Communications Museum in Mount Pearl.  We talk about the Admiralty House Communications Museum, favourite stories and artifacts found in the museum, examples of programs, stories about supernatural activities in the museum, and challenges youth face working in the heritage sector.

Aug 27, 2015

Sarah Ferber is the Education Manager at Food Security Network NL. Their mission is to actively promote comprehensive, community-based solutions to ensure access to adequate and healthy food for all people in the province. Sarah works closely with community groups across NL to gather, share and preserve food skills and knowledge. We talk about the All Around the Table film series, creating food celebrations with seniors, traditional knowledge, food skills workshops, and advancing farm-to-school and school gardening initiatives.

Aug 20, 2015

Jillian Gould is an assistant professor in the Department of Folklore at Memorial University. In the public sector she was a museum educator in New York City, and has worked with museums and archives in Toronto, Ottawa, and St. John's.  On this episode, we talk egg rolls and egg creams, fish and chips, public programming and festivals, and the public folklore program at Memorial University.

Aug 13, 2015

Kelly Jones has worked in the world of retail for the past 30 years as a sales associate, manager, merchandiser, and owner. Currently, she is on a contract for The Rooms Gift Shop, as Buyer and Product Development officer.  She is also still involved in theatre and film on a small scale, having been a professional stage manager for 10 years. On this episode of  Living Heritage, Terra Barrett chats with Kelly about the business side of running a successful museum gift shop. They talk about challenges faced by museum gift shops, how to link products to gallery exhibits, balancing the themes of collections with sales products, developing product for the Christopher Pratt exhibit, working with artists, popular price points for items, and tips for marketing your shop using social media. 

Aug 6, 2015


Heather Elliott has an educational background in anthropology and museum management. Her passion for maritime history inspired her to create her own blog,  Through it, she tells stories of ships and shipwrecks from across Canada. On this episode, we talk ships, the sea, and tips for navigating the waters of social media.

Jul 22, 2015

Dennis Garrek has over 30 yrs experience working at the local, municipal, and provincial level as a programmer, manager and consultant.  Dennis has been with SaskCulture for the past 14 years, working with communities on cultural engagement and planning, as well as managing three funding programs and liaising with provincial cultural organizations. Most recently he has been working on an ecomuseum advisory committee, community engagement animateurs, a living heritage region, and community outreach. Dennis talks about the work of SaskCulture to engage citizens across Saskatchewan in their own heritage and culture, inclusivity and cultural diversity, the ecomuseum concept, and the importance of maintaining and sharing local stories.

Jul 15, 2015

Kevin Aucoin was born and raised on a small mixed farm in the Codroy Valley on the west coast of Newfoundland. He was introduced to the 4-H program as a teenager which lead Kevin to an interest and training in the agricultural field. Kevin attended the Agricultural Colleges in Nova Scotia, Quebec, and Ontario. He worked for some 35 years in the agricultural industry, becoming involved in farm and agricultural history in the mid 1980s. Kevin discusses his family background in farming, the formation of the Agricultural History Society, changes in technology, hay barracks and root cellars, agriculture in Labrador, and the Century Farms program.

Jul 2, 2015

Living Heritage is about people who are engaged in the heritage and culture sector - all those who keep heritage alive at the community level. In this episode, we interview Christine LeGrow, the owner of Spindrift Handknits about knitting traditions. Christine was born and raised in Newfoundland and has a keen interest in the people, places and things that make this island of Newfoundland unique.