Cape Breton 2/3: The Wedding!

Welcome to our second post about Cape Breton, “Island of Crispy Oatcakes” (its new official name, used only by me, currently).

Today on the blog we share the love-filled nuptials of Janice (my former boss) and Bob (who loves my former boss very much). 

Though she’s now based in Alberta, Janice grew up on Cape Breton in the pretty town of Mabou, the same place where Claira’s sister, the nun, lives!  

The wedding took place on Thanksgiving Sunday, and before the ceremony we had lunch at The Red Shoe Pub (run by some of the Rankin sisters, of course); it has a hearty menu and darn fine soda bread. 

We ate strategically (soup and salad) so that we’d be able to fit into our dresses, but what we REALLY wanted was this, the BBQ Pork Fries:

“Sweet potato fries topped with slow cooked, sweet and spicy BBQ pork, cheddar cheese curd, and topped with our own tangy slaw.”

Uggggh.  The man at the table next to us had ordered it, and it darn near killed us to watch him eat it.

After lunch, we went to the Mabou Farmers Market, which is held in the local arena and features live music (a constant in Cape Breton culture).  


After the market, we met up with other wedding guests and followed them to the ceremony.  

It took place here.

I know.

This is one of the Rankin sister’s cottages.  Janice grew up with the Rankin family in Mabou, and they’re still close. 

The little grey house sits atop a hill, overlooking the bright, salty Atlantic.  When we arrived, there was a bagpiper playing on the lawn, and the music continued on through the ceremony,

the oyster feast afterwards,

and the reception held that evening at the local parish hall.  

At no surprise to me, Janice had organized a gorgeous meal cooked by a local chef. 

It featured all kinds of Cape Breton specialties including local chicken and vegetables,

cheese from The Wandering Shepherd (the only cheesemaker on the island), and her mother’s homemade oatcakes!

At 10pm, there was apple crisp made with apples from the Beaton farm, and of course, plenty of cheese (I first met Janice at a cheese shop, remember).    

People danced late into the evening to fiddle and guitar, and I was in awe.  What a stunning day, what an incredible community of people, and what a privilege to be a part of it all.  Thank you so much to Janice and Bob for having us, and congratulations again!