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The 2023 Fundy Sea Shanty Festival. Image/Submitted: Amy Allen.

Fundy Sea Shanty Festival looks to boost St. Martins tourism

By Regis Phillips Apr 2, 2024 | 9:50 AM

New Brunswickers can head to St. Martins this summer for the third annual Fundy Sea Shanty Festival.

Executive Director Beth Winkle said the idea of the festival came from Creative Director Gary Caines, who had the idea of a festival for a number of years.

Sea shanties were work songs sung by sailors dating back to the 1400s. They were meant to keep time while pulling on ropes for the sails and to relieve the boredom of long, repetitive tasks.

“There’s everything from kitchen parties to performers that have come from around the world that are the best sea shanties world,” said Winkle.

More than 15 solo artists and groups from across Canada will perform from August 9 to 11, such as the MacNeil Siblings from Sydney, N.S, Sean Dagher of Montreal, and Moncton’s RCMP Pipe & Drums Band.

Besides music, Winkle said the festival will also feature activities with local vendors. These include storytelling and presentations about the history of the St. Martins area, alcohol tasting from local distilleries, breakfast pre-paired by the Royal Canadian Legion, and family-friendly activities like sea glass workshops, Celtic dancing, and meeting the Mermaid Princess.

“We just want to bring people into St. Martins and let them see how beautiful it is,” added Winkle.

Early bird tickets are on sale until the end of June, with regular-priced tickets going on sale in July.

Sean Dagher. Image/Submitted: Amy Allen.
The Barra MacNeils. Image/Submitted: Amy Allen.