Sharing Successes


Sharing Successes in Partnership (Since 2011)

Hats Off and Thank you to our Leaders, Volunteers, Community Groups, Service Providers, Facility Operators, Partners and Victoria County Council & Staff for their continued support, contribution and tremendous efforts to the success of the Victoria County Municipal Physical Activity Strategy – Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011), it’s truly appreciated benefiting Residents & Visitors


Naturally Active for Life Victoria County Proud to have Participated and be Part of the Official Launch of the Victoria County Age-friendly Action Plan (September 23rd, 2017)



1st Age-friendly Municipality in Cape Breton. So nice to have a great turnout for the announcement with NS Dept of Seniors Minister Leo Glavine, MLA Keith Bain, Municipal Council including Chair of the Victoria County Age Friendly Committee Fraser Patterson and Warden Bruce Morrison, Victoria County Age Friendly Committee including Noreen-Aging well together coalition, partners, Kate Oland Baddeck Library, businesses including Graham MacKenzie, Baddeck Pharmasave, Victoria Standard (Jennifer Ripley) etc. To all involved, kudos, well done on the accomplishment, with a great spirit of cooperation Victoria County “Age Friendly” Committee. Hats Off to All Involved on A Great Initiative, Action Plan for Victoria County Moving Forward. Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011) Proud to be Part Of.

Successful 1st Bike to Bite Event Held Oct. 14, 2017



Participants enjoyed 10 Km Bike Ride during the Bike to Bite event on Saturday which included a visit to Weaver Pioneer Cemetery as part of the 6th Annual Victoria County Fall Harvest ActiveFest 2017. Thank you Participants, Pedaller’s by the Bay on a memorable morning! Look for more Bike To Bike Events in the very near future! “A great partnership with our county” (Bike to Bike Event) – Pedallers By the Bay, (Oct. 14, 2017) 🚴‍♀️🚴‍♀️🚴‍♀️🚴‍♀️

7th Annual Cape Breton Fiddlers Run Expo – Sept. 9, 2017

Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (East. 2011) Proud to have Participated with a Display (Our 2nd Annual Expo) during the 7th Annual Cape Breton Fiddlers Run Expo on Saturday at Membertou Sports & Wellness Centre.

Lots of people, engagement & networking with participants, organizations & fellow professional counterparts. Thank you to everyone who stopped by to say hi, fill out a ballot and inform people of the great assets we have in Victoria County. Had a great assistant who was a big hit too! — Also looked after the Velo Cape Breton Display (Board Member)

A BIG Congratulations to our Door Prize Winners:
-Kate Finney 902.241.2712
-Bonnie Carr 902.304.5834
-Sheldon Googoo 902.579.4059
-Cameron Greencom 902.562.6544
-Rener MacDonald (Bras d’Or) 902.565.5963
-Lorraine 902.794.1551
-Elaine Gibeny 902.578.4662
-Tanya Hutchinson 902.259.2051
-Audrey Eisner 902.275.0446
-Dianne 902.794.4707
-Keli MacLennan 902.322.7550
-Lisa MacDonald 902.877.7166
-Cheryl Butler 902.304.0191

Health Expo Organizer Colleen A. Clare CBRM Has the prizes for the above if you have not picked up already! Thank You Everyone.

“Good afternoon everyone! Thank you so much for taking part in this year’s Active Living Expo! I really appreciate you taking the time to spend the day with us! You brought your enthusiasm and energy and that’s always appreciated! It made the day go so much better for everyone! There were so many smiles! If there’s anything we can do here at CBRM Recreation to help promote your programs/events or if you’d ever like to partner on anything, please feel free to give me a call! Together we make our community better! Thanks again!” – Colleen Clare, MCIP, Cape Breton Regional Municipality, Recreation Department, Physical Activity Strategy Coordinator, 320 Esplanade, Sydney, NS, B1P 7B9 (Sept. 18, 2017)

Victoria County to Receive Workplace Wellness Gold Standard Certificate for 2016-17 from AMANS

The Municipality of the County of Victoria will be receiving a certificate within the gold standard from AMANS-Administrators Municipalities Association of Nova  Scotia for Workplace Wellness efforts for 2016-17! AMANS are awarding three municipalities within each category with a plaque based on meeting the criteria and points achieved at the AMANS Awards Ceremony Sept. 27th, 2017.

Victoria County Received Workplace Wellness Gold Standard Certificate at the AMANS Awards Ceremony on Sept. 27, 2017

Victoria County received a Workplace Wellness Gold Standard Certificate at the AMANS Awards Ceremony on Sept. 27th and was accepted by Victoria County representatives Kelly Brett & Leanne MacEachen. This is the Municipalities 3rd straight year for Gold! Naturally Active for Life Victoria County Thanks Council & Staff and all Partners, including AMANS for their continued support and contribution to our workplace wellness initiatives. Making a Difference.

The Municipal Workplace Wellness Program Continues to Make A Difference to the active and healthy lifestyles of Victoria County Management, Council & Staff. With the recent approval (June 12, 2017) of the Victoria County Healthy Eating in Physical Activity Recreation Sports & Municipal Setting Program & Policy, the continuation of building on the very successful Victoria County Active Living Subsidization Program supporting employees to be Naturally Active for Life (2016-17: 22 participated with the municipality contributing cost-shared for Golf Passes & Lessons, Fitbits, Food advice, nutritional consulting, Boxing Equipment / Stand and Bag, fishing rod, reel, hooks, walking shoes; naturopaths naturotherapists; Hiking Boots, Walkers/Runners; Hiking Bag; Running Sneakers, ski pants, sneakers, Ski Passes at Ski Cape Smokey, Simply For Life Program, Fitness Training/Dietary Advice and yoga-10 classes), staff barbeques, birthday celebrations, skating party, Workplace Wellness Monthly Newsletter Since 2012 all assists in employees’ health – mentally, socially, physically and environmentally. On behalf of the Victoria County Workplace Wellness Committee, we wish to Thank You Staff, Council, Partners and AMANS for your continued exemplary assistance, support and contribution of the program benefiting residents. Thank You AMANS for Victoria County Being Recognized for A Gold Certificate Award, it’s Truly Appreciated.” – Vince Forrestall, Municipality of the County of Victoria Physical Activity Strategy Coordinator & Chair of the Victoria County Workplace Wellness Committee.

Victoria County AMANS Workplace Wellness Report 2016 – 2017




Dear FestiVille Baddeck Sponsor: Thank you for your support of FestiVille Baddeck 2017” – FestiVille Baddeck Committee (July 26, 2017)


Naturally Active for Life Victoria County Participates in World Oceans Day and The Great Trail Event June 11, 2017

Hats off to all involved on a great World Oceans Day Event Yesterday at Iona Wharf and Port, along with the Official Opening of the Waterways Launch for 24,000 km The Great Trail – (Trans Canada Trail).

What a setting, viewscape for this part of the TCT – Kudos to all for making this happen. Thank You Ann Marie MacNeil, your Team (s), Organization(s) for all you do and the Invitation to Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011) to Participate – it’s greatly appreciated.

WorldOceansDay3rdAnnual2017The GreatTrailOpeningInvitation


AspyTrailDSCN89923 Peaks Challenge 2017 Photos have been posted to Hike the Highlands website. Click here to see team photos, Aspy Trail, Tenerife and Coastal trails photos. Thanks again for your great support of this event and to the many photographers who contribute photos – Brenda Morrison, Lauren McVeigh, Sara Deveau, Kim Bailey, Sherry MacDonald,  Arlene MacAskill, Leonard and Annette LeBlanc, Jennifer Moss, Deb Hawkes, Sam Schwartz, Rose Murphy, Vince Forrestall,  Freda Smit -McKie, Camilla Murphy and Tom Wilson.

Thanks Vince – this is so helpful (St. Ann’s Event Sheet Info/history)!! Answers all of the ins and outs of getting a newsletter up and running. Their website is fantastic” – Michelle LeBlanc, Dietician, Buchanan Memorial Hospital and North of Smokey Chronic Disease Program Development Committee (July 25, 2017)

Cape Breton Island Winter Tourism 6 Minute Video (Password: 2017)

Perfect!  Thanks Vince.  It’s great to see your support and excitement for this initiative (Winter Market Product, Cape Breton) and we do look forward to our discussions in the Fall” – Jo-Lanna Murray, Partnerships Manager, Destination Cape Breton Association (June 26, 2017)

Thanks for being a participant in the 2017 Winter Campaign Pilot ProjectDCBA’s marketing team prepared the enclosed report DestinationCapeBretonWinterCampaignPilotproject6th AnnualVictoriaCountyWinterActivefest2017 for you based on online analytics from January 1 to March 31, 2017.  The overall results of the 2017 Winter Campaign have been very positive.  In addition to the campaign, we conducted photography and video shoots that will give us great content to use in the planned 2018 Winter Campaign.  DCBA will be sharing the final report on the 2017 Winter Campaign with the Winter Product Committee in the fall as well as discussing any challenges. We do hope you will plan to participate in any future promotions.  Thanks again!” Jo-Lanna Murray, Partnerships Manager, Destination Cape Breton Association  (June 16, 2017) 

“Please find enclosed the Winter Campaign Pilot Project – Report 2017 DestinationCapeBretonWinterCampaignPilotProjectReport 2017.  DCBA’s marketing team prepared the enclosed report based on online analytics from January 1 to March 31, 2017.  The overall results of the 2017 Winter Campaign have been very positive.  In addition to the campaign, DCBA conducted photography and video shoots that will give us great content to use in the planned 2018 Winter Campaign.  DCBA has also sent individual reports to those who participated in this year’s campaign and a survey is being prepared to get further feedback.  We will be inviting the Winter Product Partners to a meeting in the fall to discuss the results of the 2017 Campaign, the feedback from the surveys, and any opportunities and/or challenges moving forward with the 2018 Campaign.  Thanks for your interest in the Winter Product. Have a great summer!” – Jo-Lanna Murray, Partnerships Manager, Destination Cape Breton Association (June 21, 2017) / “Fantastic news and a great initiative, thank you. I believe that if we all get behind this it can be a game changer for this industry on this Island” – Scott MacAuley, CEO, Cape Breton Resorts (June 21, 2017) / “Thank you for this Jo-Lanna. Look forward to working with you all on this” (June 21, 2017) – Donna MacDonald|DIRECTOR Recreation/Tourism Department Municipality of the County of Inverness / “Thanks Jo-Lanna, We are certainly supportive of assisting in any way possible on winter marketing so count us in!” – Mike Eddy, Snowmobilers Association of Nova Scotia (SANS) – (June 21, 2017)

St. Ann’s Postural Therapy and Joint Pain Program held with Leader Marcelle Lavoie–ann.html

 St. Ann’s New Website

Hi Vince, Thank you! I appreciate the information you sent as well! Your link is added under Municipality here.

 I have Naturally Active in the Newcomers guide (under “Move to St. Ann’s”), as well as the page Community (under “Community Services”). I am happy to feature anything if you want to send me photos, etc. I will also do my best to keep my ears perked for news. Thanks again! – Jay Rawding, St. Ann’s New Website (June 13, 2017)

Thank you very much Vince (Municipal Physical Activity Leadership Program: MPAL Report 2016-17)” – Larry Maxwell, Cape Breton Regional Representative, NS Dept Communities, Culture and Heritage. (June 19, 2017) / “Thank you to all those who have submitted their annual report!. Thank you for your ongoing work to address physical inactivity in Nova Scotia!” – Elaine Shelton, Manager of Physical Activity – Communities, Sport and Recreation Division – Communities, Culture and Heritage (June 20, 2017) 



Finale of the 4th Season of the South Haven Square Dance Program Held May 2, 2017 at the South Haven Community Hall 

Naturally Active for Life Victoria County are proud supporters, partners assisting the Program the last 4 seasons with Facility Access Assistance Funds in partnership through the province. We look forward to partnering and contributing to Season 5. Congratulations on a great program of physical (Participant Carolyn Grant registered 5,000 steps last night (Fitbit), social, entertainment (Kyle and Seamus with Barra MacNeil’s) and refreshments, etc. Kudos to Kathy and Clay on your leadership, commitment, passion, expertise contributing to the overall success of the program the last 4 years!

Thank You All for Contributing to A Successful 6th Annual Victoria County Trails Day June 3 and 4, 2017 – We Look Forward to Seeing You for Our 7th June 2 and 3, 2018!


HELD – 6th Annual Victoria County International Trails Day Celebration June 3 and 4, 2017 A Success!  

6th Annual Victoria County Trails Day 2017 on Franey Trail Today (June 3, 2017)! Thank you Cape Breton Highlands National Park Interpreters and all participants, partners for a memorable hike! 


Participants crossed Hiking Off their ParticipACTION 150 Play List today (June 3, 2017) as part of Victoria County 6th Annual Trails Day 2017 at Franey Trail

Proud Partners for Health included the Following:

-Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011)

-Victoria County

-Parks Canada

-Cape Breton Highlands National Park

-NS Trails

-Hike NS


Cape Breton Highlands National Park Interpreters & Local Hiking Guides led hikes for our 6th Annual Celebration (  ) including one to Micca Hill Trail on June 4th with 12 participants. Participants crossed hiking off your ParticipACTION 150 Play List and received swag (Participaction 150 Play List back pack, water bottle, Frisbee, tattoo and post card)! Thank You to participant Jacques Cote for the video highlights of the Micca Hill Guided Hike:

In Conjunction with the 15th Annual International Trails Day 2017

International Trails Day is an annual celebration of trails to promote trail development, the use of trails & the healthy lifestyle they encourage”. Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011) in partnership has been celebrating International Trails Day since June 2012.

Cape Breton Highlands National Park & Local Hiking Guides led hikes for our 6th Annual Celebration. Participants crossed hiking off their ParticipACTION 150 Play List and a won some swag (Back packs, Frisbees, water bottles, tattoos and post cards)!



Victoria County Active Outdoor Gear Loan Program 2017 A Success!

Report on Victoria County Active Gear Loan Program 2017: “Hi Vince, I am attaching a copy of the Cape Breton Regional Library’s Report on the Victoria County Active Gear Loan Program for 2017. I think you will be impressed with the numbers and the comments from borrowers” – Erin Phillips, Cape Breton Regional Library (May 2, 2017)

2017 Active Outdoor Gear Loan Program Report:



HERRSVICTORIASTANDARDIMG_20170516_125016_edit (2)

Nice Article in the latest Edition of the Victoria Standard, please see attachedHealthy Eating Recreation Sports Settings Policy, Assistance Fund.

Hike NS Summit 2017 Presentations Photos

Hi Vince, Nice meeting and your family at the Hiking Summit. Here’s the link to the photos” – Sam Schwartz (Summit participant, Howie Centre, Cape Breton)!AuIocdWNu7G9jh8CaEtEg14P-MiV

Naturally Active for Life Victoria County Proud to Support & Assist the Mi’Kmaw Surf Program Benefiting Wagmatcook First Nation Residents

Naturally Active for Life Victoria County Proud to Be A Partner and Participant in Hike NS Winter Hike Series 2017 Success

Hike Nova Scotia and 32 host organizations across the province partnered up to offer the 2017 Winter Guided Snowshoe Hike Series in January, February and March. There were 47 hikes offered for over 940 people.

Naturally Active for Life Victoria County Hosted Our 6th Annual Victoria County Winter Guided Snowshoe Fest 2017 Hikes at Uisge Ban Falls, Franey Trail, Smokey Mountain Towers, 2nd Annual Skyline Trail and 6th Annual Baddeck Middle River Old Time Commute Trek.

Hikes were led by local folks and participants qualified to win “trail prizes.” Hike NS thanks its partners for organizing the hikes on the ground as well as NS Trails and the NS Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage for their support.

Hi Vince, I enjoyed the weekend snowshoeing (Skyline Trail March 25, 2017 & Smokey Mountain Towers March 26, 2017). I’m attaching the photos I took in the attached link. Please feel free to share them or use them in your website. Thanks for organizing the event“- Sam Schwartz (Participant at both-March 26, 2017)

Pretty wonderful time of year for up there (Smokey Mountain Towers). Great you still take people up there” – Marcelle Lavoie (March 27, 2017)

“Wonderful! Thank you! (Smokey Mtn Towers Guided Snowshoe Hike)” – Janet Barlow, Executive Director Hike Nova Scotia (March 27, 2017)

HI Vincent, Thx for the photos. I had a great time and the scenics were wonderful (Smokey Mtn Towers Guided Snowshoe Hike). The trees all covered in ice and the snow and the sun and the mountains were great for photo taking” – Larry Gibbons (March 26, 2017)

“Hi Vince, thanks for organizing such an amazing day (Skyline Trail Snowshoe Guided Hike March 25, 2017)! So amazed that the fog broke right at the time that we were ready for the view. Here are some pictures from the day, feel free to use them for anything!” – Lorraine Margaret (March 27, 2017)

“Had a great day on the Skyline trail snowshoeing today with a great group. It was a magical day with some silver thaw on the trees and fog hanging on the mountain. While we were resting up at the viewing plane at the end are view of nothing magically cleared . A must see in the winter time – Done today with a group of 22 – thank you #hikens !!!”

Lorraine Pye-VarnesAwesome day(March 25, 2017)

Joanne Fraserawesome” (March 25, 2017)

John JohnsonThanks for sharingVince Forrestall! (March 25, 2017)

Karen BrewerThank You to Vince Forrestall and Naturally Active for Life Victoria County“!!!

Hi Vince, Thank you so much for the photos (Skyline Trail Snowshoe March 25th)! They gave me a really good idea about what to expect when I head over. Thank you again for the documentation and time” – Lorraine Albert (March 26, 2017)

Report for Yoga Drum Dance Winter ActiveFest 2017

Date: March 12, 2017

Time: 10:30 – 12:00pm

Location: Big Bras D’or Fire hall

Instructors:   Shelley Allan (Drum/dance/music)

Rhoda MacCormick (yoga/dance)

Number of Participants: 12

Program:        30 minutes chair yoga/dance/ meditation

30 minutes: drum/dance/meditation/scarf movement

20 minutes Tea and sharing

Comments from Evaluation:

 Great way to start the morning- lots of energy to start the day

Wonderful workshop- felt happy and calm all at once

I am a stay at home mom with 2 young children also help run my husband’s business and this made me feel amazing. In this hectic life, we sometimes forget to do [something] for ourselves.”

I hope this becomes a weekly activity so much fun and the leaders were amazing.”

We scored 5 (Most) on all of the 5 questions except for one score of 4 and the participant had attended our session before and she was familiar with the session’s content.

Evaluation Form is included with this report.

Instructors Evaluation:

Hall was clean, warm and inviting. Shelley and I enjoyed the space and the atmosphere of the hall.  Participants were all able to do the activity and it appeared they enjoyed the selection of music and activities.

We would like to sincerely thank Victoria County for giving us the funding and opportunity to offer the Yoga, drum, and dance session.

Sincerely, Rhoda MacCormick and Shelley Allan

(Submitted April 26, 2017 by Rhoda MacCormick)




March 27, 2017 – Dear Vince Forrestall: “On behalf of the Cape Breton University Students’ Union, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank you for your participation in this year’s Health Fair. We received a lot of positive feedback from students and staff, and they appreciated the diversity of the booths.  There were many positive comments on how interactive the booths were, and I wanted to pass these comments on to you. I hope you will join us again next year, and once again, thank you for your participation. All the best in the year ahead. Sincerely” – Dawn MacDougall, Executive Assistant, CBU Students’ Union

THANK YOU for Contributing to the Success of our 6th Annual Victoria County Winter ActiveFest 2017

Hats Off and Thank You to Victoria County Volunteers, Leaders, Community Groups, Service Providers, Facility Operators, Partners, Municipal Council & Staff for their continued Support, Contribution & Tremendous Efforts Leading to Success of our recent 6th Annual Victoria County Winter ActiveFest 2017 in Partnership with Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011), it’s truly appreciated benefiting Residents & Visitors. We’ll see you again February 9 to March 18, 2018 for our 7th Annual!

Steps in Flight Walking and Mini-Steps Discovery Programs Enjoy Successful 2017 Season:

170 participants enjoyed walking in the friendly and safe environment at the Bell Museum National Historic Site this past winter, January to March 2017.
Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011) wishes to thank all participants and partners including:
-Alexander Graham Bell National Historic Site
-Parks Canada
-Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011)
-Victoria County
-Heart & Stroke Foundation
on contributing to its success. We look forward to seeing you in 2018!

Thank You for Being Part of the 2017 Hiking Summit

On behalf of Hike Nova Scotia and the organizing committee, I would like to thank you for being part of the 2017 Hiking Summit.  We had a total of 200 people at the Summit – our biggest turn-out yet. It couldn’t have happened without our team of hard-working volunteers! (May 8, 2017) – Naturally Active for Life Victoria County had a display and presented 2 times (Hike NS 2018 Summit in Ingonish and Victoria County Winter Guided Snowshoe Hikes)

Municipal Physical Activity Strategy Renewed

March 20, 2017 Ashton, Aron – “Hey hey! Great news indeed Vince! Well done!”

Elyane Saul, March 20, 2017 – “Sweet!! Amazing Vince!

Ann Marie MacKay MacNeil, March 20, 2017 – “Excellent news  and congratulations on a great job Vince!” 

Patsy MacKenzie, March 20, 2017 – “Congratulations Vince & Eileen! Fantastic work for residents of Victoria County.  We are lucky to have you!”

Feb. 27, 2017 saw a presentation to Municipal Council to Renewal the Municipal Physical Activity Strategy by Eileen Woodford (Chair of the Strategy Partnership Management representing Residents) – The Strategy was renewed (Motion Feb. 28th). The following is from the approved minutes:


The successes in the northern area of the Municipality were discussed indicating that cost and safety are two issues that are brought forward by the residents. The successful events taking place in District #5 were also outlined. Congratulations were extended from all Councillors on the events, promotions and successes as a result of the strategy. Along with the health of the community, it is also the social aspect that is equally as important.

Warden Morrison extended a thank you to Eileen Woodford and Vince Forrestall for the presentation and indicated that if there is anything Council can do, to ask.

Deputy Warden Dauphinee referred to last night’s presentation with regard to the Active Living Strategy and the fact that council did not renew the strategy at this meeting.

It was moved and seconded that the Victoria County Active Living Strategy be renewed. Motion carried.

6th Annual Middle River Baddeck Old Time Commute Trek 2017 A Success!


Postural Therapy Program A Success!

Update for you Vince. St Ann’s Bay first session had about 25 people.  6 from Sydney, 2 from Baddeck. People are so excited about getting their motion back without pain that they are driving quite a ways to see what this is all about.  Imagine all those out there who have stopped hiking and the like, discovering that they can actually resume these activities!  I get excited at the whole idea.  (which is why I got certified in the first place)” – Marcelle Lavoie, Certified leader (March 6, 2017) – Naturally Active for Life Victoria County was a proud partner in the Program and Marcelle’s Leadership Development / Marcelle Lavoie – (Feb. 28, 2017) Today’s Painfree Program (Ingonish)  “Hi Vince, I feel today’s session went real well.  Nine people showed up and I was pleased.  I had expected about 6.  The next session on Thursday is on the hip”.

Eat, Drink and Be Healthy Session Feb. 23, 2017 A Success!

Chef George Smith Presented to 10 participants at the popular Eat, Drink and Be Healthy Series at the Baddeck Library Feb. 23rd as part of the 6th Annual Victoria County Winter ActiveFest 2017. George presented on “How to Cook Perfect Millet Every Time” Proud Partners for Your Health: Baddeck Library, Cape Breton Regional Library, Chef George Smith and Naturally Active for Life Victoria County. Here is the recipe downloadable for your convenience:



2nd Annual Sobeys Winter Wellness Fair 2017 A Success!

Sobeys Prince Street Sydney 728 in Sydney, Nova Scotia.

Here it is! A little video compilation from our Winter Wellness Fair:

Teamwork from all angles with our dietitian, chef, pharmacy, and store managers to host this in-store event and further connect our community to all that is taking place in our area. We received a lot of positive feedback, so we are happy you enjoyed it!

Victoria County Active Outdoor Gear Loan Program

Jan. 14 to Feb 23, 2017 Usage Report:


Looks like the goals are being achieved by the partners involved benefiting residents & visitors. A great start!

Quick Facts:

  • Number of Borrowers: 50
  • Number of New Library Members as a Result of the program: 15
  • Number of People Who Renewed Memberships as a Result of the Program: 8
  • Skis Checked Out: 23 sets
  • Ski Poles Checked Out: 23 sets
  • Snowshoes Checked Out: 43 sets (15 men’s, 14 women’s, 7 youth and 7 kids)
  • Snowshoe Poles Checked Out: 37 (29 Adults, 8 kids)
  • Ski Boots Checked Out: 24 pairs
  • Ice Traction Cleats Checked Out: 10 sets


The vast majority of borrowers commented that they “had always wanted to try skiing or snowshoeing, but had been reluctant to invest in the equipment in case they ended up not linking the sport”. People have been “pleased to be able to borrow equipment and try these activities at no cost“.

Good Quality equipment – nice & light“.

This has really changed how I feel about winter. I’m loving it. And if this program hadn’t existed, I never would have tried skiing.”

Our friends were coming to visit the area and we were trying to think of things to do with them. This allowed us to take them out on the trails and see the area

Available to all library patrons in Victoria County via Baddeck Branch and the Victoria County Bookmobile. Call 902 295 2055 for information! Check them out FREE for two weeks at a time with your library card. In Partnership with Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011), Baddeck Library now offers snowshoes and poles, cross country skis and poles, ski boots, walking poles, and ice grips!

Your Partners for Your Health

-Cape Breton Regional Library

-Baddeck Library

-North Victoria Library Branch

-Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011)

-Victoria County

-NS Dept Communities, Culture & Heritage


Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011) & our partners recognizes and acknowledges  the financial support of the Province of Nova Scotia for this great initiative. We are pleased to work in partnership with the Nova Scotia Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage to develop and promote our cultural resources for all Nova Scotians.


North Highlands Nordic – February’s 2017 Moonlight Adventure! — at North Highlands Nordic.

The moonlight adventure on February 11, 2017 was a success! Thank you to Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011) for sponsoring the event! To those who participated in the adventure, thank you for a memorable evening!

47 Snowshoed Uisge Ban Falls Provincial Park Winter During Guided Hike on Feb. 11, 2017. Thanks for all the assistance Gert Gielen, Linda MacEae, Bob Hill, Jennifer Lindgren and all who participated to the falls and some took the river trail! It was fun-Winter Wonderland! People from away couldn’t believe how much snow there was in Victoria County! If you are planning, be careful as you approach the bridge and to the falls.

Participants included from: Baddeck 8, Sydney 7, Sydney Mines 4, Glace Bay 4, NS Margaree 4, Mulgrave 3, Margeree Valley 2, Margeree Sentre 2, Mill Creek 2, North Sydney 2, Marion Bridge 2, Nyanza 2, Boularderie 1, Millville 1, Stewiake 1, Middle River 1, Isle Madame 1


Shirley Campbell “Thank you very much for hosting this event. We had a great day!”

Linda MacRae “It was a great outing! Thank you for hosting!” (February 11, 2017)

Karen Breen WeltonWow 47 is impressive! I had a friend up from Glace bay today, went snowshoeing as well. She couldn’t believe the snow we had either!” February 11, 2017


Gert GielenWe had fun Thank you” February 12, 2017

It was beautiful out there (Uisge Ban Falls Winter Guided Hike – Hike NS Winter Series)!  Thank you” – Laverne MacRae (Feb. 11, 2017);

It was a great hike, Vince”, Uisge Ban snowshoe hike (February 11, 2017) “It sure was beautiful!” – Leanne Paon, Participant (Isle Madame, Richmond County) – Feb. 13, 2017

We thoroughly enjoyed the hike yesterday…and our lunch at 3 Doors Down…it has been many yrs since we first hiked the falls but will will be back sooner that later…” – Karen Brewer, Member of Cape Breton Outdoor Adventurers (Feb. 12, 2017)

It was an event of the Hike NS Winter Series 2017 and the 6th Annual Victoria County Winter ActiveFest 2017 in partnership with #HikeNS and #NaturallyActiveforLifeVictoriaCounty

In 2017, the cape North Farmers’ Market received grants totaling $2,700 from the Naturally Active for Life Program of Victoria County, in support of our Market’s goal on increased local food production in our North of Smokey communities. 2016 proved to be a very successful year for the Market in terms of activities undertaken, number of vendors, number of visitors, and vendor revenues. On behalf of the Cape North Farmers’ Market, I would like to thank the Naturally Active for Life Program for its encouragement and support of the Farmers’ Market and is efforts” – Sincerely, Rob MacDonald, Secretary-Treasurer, Cape North Farmer’s Market Coop Ltd  (Dec. 16, 2016)

Thank You MLA Pam Eyking for the Official Announcement of Provincial Funding of $16,870.00 for the Victoria County Facility Access Program 2016-17

This funding continues to make a difference in rural, isolated Victoria County which supports and assists Victoria County Volunteers, Leaders, Community Groups, Service Providers & Facility Operators to have their facilities accessible for residents & visitors (i.e. North Highlands Nordic Open House Jan. 8th, 2017 with 115 participants)

The Victoria County Physical Activity Strategy – Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011) recognizes the support of the Province of Nova Scotia. We are pleased to work in partnership with the Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage to Develop and Promote our Cultural Resources for All Nova Scotian’s.

Successful After the Bell, After-school Free Skating 2016 Held

Victoria Highland Civic Centre (Baddeck Rink)



Student “Free” Skating HELD
  • November 24, 2016 – HELD

3:30 – 4:30 pm: FREE – Open to all!

 4:30 – 5:30pm FREE SKATE TO ALL sponsored by REMAX

  • December 1, 2016 – HELD

3:30 – 4:30 pm: FREE – Open to all! 

4:30 – 5:30 pm FREE SKATE TO ALL sponsored by REMAX

  • December 8, 2016 – HELD

3:30 – 4:30 pm: FREE – Open to all!

 4:30 – 5:30 pm FREE SKATE TO ALL sponsored by REMAX

  • December 15, 2016 – HELD

3:30 – 4:30 pm: FREE – Open to all! 

4:30 – 5:30 pm FREE SKATE TO ALL sponsored by REMAX

“Kids Just Want To Have Fun Christmas Party” HELD
December 15
3:30-4:30 pm
Victoria Highland Civic Centre (Baddeck Rink)
FREE (Free skate goes until 5:30 pm).
Parents – please contribute a snack for Thursday…it can be cookies, candy canes, cupcakes, juice boxes, veggies, fruit – whatever you can! It will be shared between all!
Please also contribute items for crafts…for the craft table for those that don’t skate so everyone can join in the fun.
Errol & Holly MacInnis of Tim Hortons will provide hot chocolate for all.
Please contact Tammy MacSween (, 902-565-1273) or Bonni Kuchta (902-295-2527) as soon as possible so we know what we will have. (Please note this is not a supervised event, parents and caregivers are responsible for their child’s safety).

“After the Bell” and “Remax” Free skating – Victoria Highlands Centre, Baddeck, Thursdays 3:30 – 5:30. December 29, 2016 3:30 – 4:30 only

Proudly Supported by Your Partners in Health:

  • Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011)
  • Victoria County
  • NS “Thrive”
  • NS Department of Communities, Culture & Heritage
  • Victoria Highland Civic Centre
  • Remax
THANK YOU ALL (Participants, parents, partners, facility operator, sponsors, etc.) FOR  CONTRIBUTING TO A VERY  SUCCESSFUL After the Bell, After-school Free Skating 2016

Successful 3rd Annual Merry 7mas Free Family Skates Held 2016


Victoria Highland Civic Centre (Baddeck Rink)



  • Free Skating party with “Santa & the reindeers” HELD

November 25 – Christmas in the Village Event (Baddeck)

  • Free “Family” Skate HELD

December 2, 2016

1:00 – 2:30 pm

  • Free “Family” Skate

December 9, 2016 ***Due to school re-scheduled to Dec. 23, 10 am to 11:30 am

1:00 – 2:30 pm

  • Free “Family” Skate – Christmas Fundraiser HELD

December 22, 2016

6:00 – 8: 00 pm


  • Free “Christmas Break: Skate HELD

December 23, 2016

10:00 to 11:30 am

  • Free “Christmas Break” Family Skate HELD

December 28, 2016

1:00 – 2:30 pm

  • Free “End of 2016” Family Skate HELD

December 29, 2016

1:00 – 2:30 pm

  • Free “Kick-off 2017” Family Skate HELD

January 2, 2017

1:00 – 2:30 pm

Proudly Presented by Your Partners in Health:

  • Midway Motors
  • Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011)
  • Victoria County
  • Tim Horton’s Baddeck Store
  • Victoria Highland Civic Centre
  • NS “Thrive”
  • NS Department of Communities, Culture & Heritage
THANK YOU ALL (Participants, parents, partners, facility operator, sponsors, etc.) FOR  CONTRIBUTING TO A VERY  SUCCESSFUL 3rd Annual Merry 7mas Free Family Skates Held 2016 – it was greatly appreciated. See you at our 4th Annual in 2017!


115 participated in the Open House at North Highlands Nordic (Jan. 15, 2017) “Flurries in the Highlands”!

115 participated in the Open House at North Highlands Nordic yesterday (Jan. 15th) – “Flurries in the Highlands”! (100 last yr)

Thank you Linda Murray and your great team / organization / Facility benefiting Victoria County Residents + Visitors – great skiing and social yesterday!

Proud Partners for Your Health:

-North Highlands Nordic Ski Facility

-Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011)

-Victoria County

-NS Dept of Communities, Culture & Heritage

-NS Thrive

Very Successful 3rd Annual Bay St Lawrence Santa’s Workshop 2016 Held 

Thank You Jeannie Bonnar, Amy MacKinnon and all involved on a very successful 3rd Annual Bay St Lawrence Santa’s Workshop 2016 held Saturday, December 3rd with lots of great donated goods, Christmas crafts, hula hooping, present wrapping, Christmas apples + oranges, candy canes, Baddeck Tim Horton’s Hot Chocolate + Tim Bits. Great to be part of each year. Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011)Proud to support in Partnership (Our 4th Christmas Season Partnership with Bay St lawrence Community Centre). See you in 2017!

Naturally Active for Life Victoria County Est. 2011 (Municipal Physical Activity Strategy) Participates in its 6th Straight Canada Health Day 2017 – A SUCCESS

THANK YOU for Visiting Our Website Page (Since 2012)

Contributing To Our Successes:

Views 16,549
Visitors 6,987
Views per visit 2.37
Posts published 50
All-time Posts, Views & Visitors:
Posts 469
Views 44,508
Visitors 19,357
Best ever: 875 (Jan. 6, 2015)
Views 17,821
Visitors 8465
Views per Visit 2.11
Posts Published 242
Views 9496
Visitors 3788
Views per Visit 2.51
Posts Published 324
Views 218
Visitors 117
Views per Visit 1.86
Views 424
Visitors 9
Views per visit 47.11
Posts 74 – It’s Greatly Appreciated.

 Baddeck Duathlon (1st Held 2016)

The duathlon was a huge success last year and we are looking forward to this year (2017)!  As always, we greatly appreciate your support” – Sarah Penney (Dec. 12, 2016); “Perfect! Thanks for the info (Funding options & deadlines)” – Sarah Penney (Dec. 12, 2016)


After the Bell, After-school 2016 Skates Successful

Thank You for participating in the free after-school, After the Bell skates Nov 24 & Dec 1, 2016, 3:30-5:30 pm at the Victoria Highland Civic Centre contributing to its success from your Partners in Health: Remax (Minerva MacInnis); Victoria County, Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est 2011), Victoria Highland Civic Centre, NS Thrive + NS Dept Communities, Culture + Heritage – it’s greatly appreciated!

Cabot School Garden 2016


Pictures of this Fall’s work with Cabot Students & Teacher Susan Whitty, harvesting & preparing the gardens for winter. “Your support & county assistance funding were greatly appreciated!” – Claudia Gallagher & Rejean (& Photo credits)

Picture of Cabot Students staffing a table at the last Cape North Farmers Market of the season, where they sold the vegetables they harvested – potatoes, kale, onions & carrots – making $35 to spend on seed for the garden next year.”They did a fabulous job. Congrats” – Lisa Bowers (& Photo Credit)

Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011) is a proud supporter of this great initiative. Kudos to all involved benefiting residents & visitors. THANK YOU for all you do.

Dear Vince, In 2016, the Naturally Active for Life Program supported ongoing work at the student gardens at Cabot Junior-Senior High. With the enthusiastic help of teacher Susan Whitty, Rejean Chamberland and I had the opportunity to mentor students throughout the spring and fall. The kids got to head out of the classroom to dig, sow, mulch, water and weed; handle shovels, rakes and wheelbarrows; and generally have fun getting their hands dirty. In the fall they harvested potatoes, carrots, onions and kale. Two students took a vendor’s table at the Cape North Farmers Market. They got to experience the market’s high energy and made $35 in sales of produce. These funds will be put toward seeds and supplies for the upcoming gardening season. The support of Naturally Active for this ongoing project was very much appreciated! Sincerely“, – Claudia Gahlinger Mentor, Cabot Student Garden (Feb. 24, 2017)

Naturally Active for Life Victoria County  (Est. 2011) Proud to Be A Partner of the North Highlands Orchard Project – Since 2013

CapeNorthFarmersMarketGrove and border Vic Standard

Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011) Proud to Partner & Support the After the Bell after-school Yoga Program at Baddeck Academy Fall 2016

Hats off to all involved! THANK YOU for all you do.
Proud Partners for Your Health:
-Baddeck Academy
-Victoria County
-Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011)
-NS “Thrive”
-NS Department of Communities, Culture & Heritage

Christmas in Baddeck Event 2016 Very Successful

Thank you Vince  for everything (Christmas in Baddeck 2016)” –  Iris Kedmi [Organizing Committee), November 27, 2016

THANK YOU to all who attended Dr. Chris Milburn’s Presentations last night (Nov. 24, 2016) at the Baddeck Library and at the North Victoria Library Branch on Wednesday (Nov. 23, 2016). “The Importance of being Active for Life” – it was greatly appreciated. Well received, successful, informative & inspirational with engaged residentsThank You Chris & Baddeck Library, North Victoria Library Branch, Cape Breton Regional Library & Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011) for partnering on this initiative. Leona Donovan StockleyThank you Vince for the opportunity to hear Chris speak. It was a great evening. Anytime@” (Nov. 24, 2016)

Great turn out today (Nov. 24, 2016) at the rink (Victoria Highland Civic Centre), thanks again to naturally active and remax for sponsoring the ice time (After the Bell After-school Skating open to all!). Same time next Thursday (Dec. 1, 2016)! ! 3:30-5:30 pm” – Andrew MacDonald

We did get a great turn out for the moonlit pumpkin walk! We were very happy overall with the attendance with the 3rd Annual Huckle Buckle Festival 2016” – Lee Williams (Event Coordinator, Ingonish Development Society (IDS)), Oct. 31, 2016



(Sept. 20, 2016)

Summer Family Yoga 2016 A Success

5 free weeks of yoga held with certified yoga instructor Patsy MacKenzie! Patsy is the author of “Elementary Yoga” (Boularderie Island Press) and regularly teaches yoga to children: 



Baddeck Library at 902 295 2055 – Proudly supported in partnership by Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011)


FestiVille Baddeck 2016 A Success


Hi Vince: I received Assistance Fund from Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Partner) for Festiville. Thank you so much”  Iris Kedmi, Organizing Committee (Sept. 15, 2016); “Thank You for all your support“, Rosalie Pineo, Organizing Committee (Sept. 1, 2016)

Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011) Proud to Partner & Support the Yoga Program at the Baddeck Library this Fall! (2016)

Hats off to all involved! THANK YOU for all you do.
Proud Partners for Your Health:
-Baddeck Library
-Cape Breton Regional Library
-Victoria County
-Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011)
-NS “Thrive”
-NS Department of Communities, Culture & Heritage

Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011) Reaches Milestone:

5 Full Years June 13, 2011 – June 13, 2016

Terry BernardGreat working with you Vince Forrestall always a pleasure” June 12 (2016)
Aron George AshtonSame here Terry! A great community leader Vince!” 
June 12 (2016)

Strategy Receives 1 Year Renewal 2016-17:



The Victoria County Naturally Active strategy has been very successful and much has been accomplished,” said Warden Bruce Morrison. “The strategy’s goals were to raise awareness, create partnerships and get the residents of Victoria County moving. We are definitely on the right path

Launched in 2011, the program saw consultations with community groups and leaders. From these talks came the creation and development of physical activity programs for youth, seniors, First Nations Communities, women and more

We have built a strong foundation for the future of physical activity, healthy eating and general health & wellness for our residents,” said the Warden. Health & wellness policies have been developed within the county and in area schools and partnerships are now in place

Before this program, for example, many area schools – with excellent wellness facilities, were out of reach for community members after school hours. This program has seen partnerships and policies created, that provide access to the facilities in the schools for our residents”

A recent phone survey found that Victoria County residents had increased their level of awareness and their level of physical activity (22%) since the launch of the strategy June 13, 2011

Physical Activity Strategy Renewal 2016-2021 Presentation to Council

February 22, 2016:

Naturally Active For Life Victoria County (Est. 2011)

StrategyRenewalPresentationToCouncilVinceFebruary222016(Municipal Courthouse, Baddeck) 

PACitizenSurvey2015Victoria County








Alicia Lake with Vince Forrestall.

February 22 at 5:24pm ·

· “Vince presents 5 years of wellness at Victoria County (Renewal of Physical Activity Strategy Presentation To Council – Feb. 22, 2016) – Great work Vince!!”

Your very welcome. Making a big difference in all communities …” – District 8 Councilor John Buchanan – JB, Feb. 23, 2016

Hi Vince – Glad it (Renewal of Physical Activity Strategy Presentation To Council – Feb. 22, 2016) went well” – Eileen Woodford, Chair of Strategy Partnership (Feb. 23, 2016)

Andree Crepeau – President, Velo Cape Breton: Congrats!! (Renewal of Physical Activity Strategy Presentation To Council – Feb. 22, 2016) – Feb. 23, 2016

Wallace Bernard – Physical Activity Coordinator, Waycobah”Congrats buddy:) (Renewal of Physical Activity Strategy Presentation To Council – Feb. 22, 2016)” – Feb. 23, 2016
Wanda Hart MacLeodWay to go Vince Forrestall! You are amazing!!” – 
Feb. 22 at 6:05pm – (Renewal of Physical Activity Strategy Presentation To Council – Feb. 22, 2016); Wanda Hart MacLeodAwesome!” – Feb. 24, 2016
Lennan MacIsaacGreat job Vince Forrestall ” – (Renewal of Physical Activity Strategy Presentation To Council – Feb. 22, 2016) – Feb. 22, 2016


Courtesy of Council was extended to Vince Forrestall, Physical Activity Strategy Coordinator, who was in attendance to provide an update and renewal presentation on the Victoria County Physical Activity Strategy to Council (copy attached)

Mr. Forrestall indicated it has been five years since work began on the strategy and it has been a pleasure to serve as Coordinator and live, play, and work in Victoria County. He then provided a presentation on the Victoria County Physical Activity Strategy which was viewed by those in attendance

Mr. Forrestall indicated that as the completion of the five year term was approaching, a review was conducted with a view to renewing the strategy for the next five years. He outlined the principles and values and the five goals for 2016-2021. The 5 goals:

• 1. Awareness and information

• 2. Partnership and Networks

• 3. Programs and Activities

• 4. Infrastructure

• 5. Policies

Mr. Forrestall indicated that there is still work to be done and he hoped Council would allow this work to continue and renew the strategy for the next five years: 2016 – 2021. He also outlined the key findings from the Citizens survey completed in November, 2015 -including 22% of residents increased their physical activity levels the last 3 years!

Council thanked Mr. Forrestall for his work over the past five years and indicated that they have seen the results in their districts. Warden Morrison extended a thank you to Mr. Forrestall.

Thanks for everything Vince, you’ve been my role model since day 1” – Wally Bernard, Physical Activity Coordinator, Waycobah (June 7, 2016)

Thank you for your RDG (Regional Development Grant) Application (Victoria County Active Outdoor Gear Loan Program)seeking financial support for the above program. I am pleased to inform you, having reviewed it, that it will be on its way for final consideration to our Halifax office tomorrow. Thanks again” – Larry Maxwell, Regional representative Cape Breton, Communities, Sport & Recreation Division, Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage (Oct. 26, 2016)

Hi there, love the info on this page (Naturally Active for Life Victoria County FaceBook Page)” – Jennifer-Jesty-LeBlanc (June 3, 2016) 

afterthebelllogoI look forward to continuing and expanding the great work we are doing through ATB (After the Bell: AS – After School Time Period) in Cape Breton.  Thanks” – Wayne McKay, Cape Breton Regional Physical Activity Consultant (Aug. 9, 2016) – “I look forward to continuing the great work that we are doing through ATB (After-school time period) in Cape Breton” – Wayne McKay, Cape Breton Regional Physical Activity Consultant (Aug. 30, 2016)

Municipal Physical Activity Strategy Presents at St. Ann’s Seniors Luncheons (Nov. 16, 2016)

Thank you to all participants and the host group – St Ann’s Bay Healthy Group Society for having Naturally Active For Life Victoria County Est. 2011 present today – lots of nice comments, interest & engagement. Will be working on the pressing questions asked, benefiting residents & visitors:




Cabot School Health & Wellness Day 2016 A Success 

#‎NaturallyActiveforLifeVictoriaCounty‬(Est. 2011) Proud to Partner & Support the very successful ‪#‎CabotSchool‬‪#‎HealthandWellness‬Day 2016 – Kudos to all involved including ‪#‎MarieHawley‬. “We had an amazing day” – Marie Hawley (June 13, 2016)


#‎NaturallyActiveforLifeVictoriaCounty‬ Proud to Support ‪#‎WagmatcookFirstNation‬ ‪#‎MiKmawAquatics‬ & ‪#‎MiKmawSurf‬ Successful Programs

6 ‪#‎Mikmaw‬communities participated in the Mi’kmaw Surf Program. For the last few summers, youth from these communities have been learning to ‪#‎surf‬at ‪#‎PointMichaudBeach‬. The program started as a partnership between ‪#‎EskasoniFirstNation‬, ‪#‎SurfAssociationofNS‬, ‪#‎NSDeptofCommunitiesCultureandHeritage‬and ‪#‎RichmondCounty‬

This spring 2016, ‪#‎Membertou‬used ‪#‎AftertheBell‬‪#‎funding‬to train 8 youth in ‪#‎bronzemedallion‬. Two of these girls went on to finish ‪#‎bronzecross‬and six will be completing bronze cross over the summer. Two will also be training as ‪#‎juniorsurfinstructors‬. Through this partnership, we are growing aquatics leadership in the ‪#‎CapeBretonRegion

This/above was today’s session (Family Summer Yoga Program 2016 at Baddeck Library) 😄😄, As always Thank you.😄” – Leader Patsy MacKenzie, Aug. 16, 2016

Baddeck Academy Health & Wellness Day 2016 HELD

Proudly Supported & Partnered by Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Since 2013)




May 18, 2016


Jocelyn & Shandel

(Staff Room)



Rae Harvey




Tony Deveaux

(Miss Baird)


Brian MacLeod

(Big Gym)


Eric Latwaitis





Kait & Natasha

(Multi-purpose Rm)



May 18, 2016    



Jennifer Ripley

(Family Studies

Cooking Room)

LEARN TO        


Carol Campbell

(Music Room)

FREE TO BE U      

Kelsey & Deena

(Miss Baird’s)


Northside Dance

Jenna & Marissa











  Milling Frolic

David Rankin

(Art Room)

morganbookcleannsNaturally Active Victoria County For Life Congratulates Morgan Book – A Green Leader to Call Our Own 

Clean NS is thrilled to pass on the news that one of their staff, Youth Corps Coordinator Morgan Book, has been named one of the ‘Top 30 Under 30 Sustainability Leaders” by Corporate Knights, the Canadian “Magazine for Clean Capitalism,” in large part due to her excellent leadership on the NS Youth Corps Program

Naturally Active for Life Victoria County was included in this, as we were a key part of the NSCC Youth Corps Program Success as well (Trail Ambassador & Nature Ambassadors (2) summer positions 2014 & 2015)

2016 Hiking Summit A Resounding Success and Naturally Active for Life Victoria County was a Proud Participant!

On behalf of Hike Nova Scotia and the Hiking Summit organizing committee, I would like to thank you for being part of the Summit. Hike NS is grateful to have had top notch co-hosts in organizing the Summit: the Digby Area Recreation Commission and the Fundy Erratics hiking group. We also thank the NS Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage for its support. We had a total of 175 people at the Summit – our biggest turn-out yet! 

The silent auction – a first for Hike NS – raised about $3,000. Thank you to those who participated for your generosity in bidding for items. We also thank the generous businesses, organizations and individuals who donated items to the auction. To view photos from the Summit, please view Hike NS’s Twitter and Facebook accounts as well as the Fundy Erratics Facebook page at Read about the Hiking Summit Award recipients here Attached are the notes from the Future of Hiking in Nova Scotia – An Interactive Discussion session, facilitated by Steven Rolls. By special request, also attached are recipes for some of the gluten-free and vegan food at the Summit, provided courtesy of Anna-Marie MacKenzie Kelly. The folks in Digby are happy to welcome you back to the Digby area this summer and fall to experience the trails. 

We can’t wait for the 2017 Hiking Summit in Tatamagouche. Our co-host will be the Cobequid Eco-Trails Society. We’ll be celebrating Hike Nova Scotia’s tenth anniversary next year, so we hope to see you all there to help us mark this special occasion! Janet Barlow, Executive Director, Hike Nova Scotia /

Naturally Active for Life Victoria County Participated in the NS Outdoor Network Launch (June 14, 2016) – ONLaunch-NewsRelease-June2016 (3)


#‎NaturallyActiveforLifeVictoriaCounty‬ Proud to Support & Partner with Wagmatcook First Nation on Successful ‪#‎Coaches‬ Certification in ‪#‎NCCP‬ & ‪#‎HighFive‬ June 11  12, 2016 in Membertou

“This past weekend was huge in the ‪#‎development‬ of ‪#‎sport‬ in our communities. As a joint effort between ‪#‎Membertou‬, ‪#‎SportNovaScotia‬, and #HighFive, 37 community members from 6 ‪#‎Mikmaw‬ communities, Membertou, ‪#‎Eskasoni‬, ‪#‎Potlotek‬, ‪#‎Wagmatcook‬, ‪#‎Waycobah‬, and ‪#‎Paqtnkek‬ are now #NCCP certified coaches in ‪#‎softball‬, ‪#‎soccer‬, ‪#‎basketball‬ and ‪#‎volleyball‬

We also have 29 coaches dedicated to making #sport and ‪#‎recreation‬ experiences positive, by becoming certified in High Five Sport. I want to send out a huge thank you to Sport NS, each sport trainer, and each community for supporting the growth of trained athletes in Mi’kmaw communities. Sport training has been on my radar for the last 3 years, and I am certainly not finished yet!!” – Krista Devoe, Physical Activity Coordinator, Membertou

NS Thrive Facility Access Funding Program in Partnership with Naturally Active for Life Victoria County Making A Difference in Victoria County For 3rd Straight Year 




#‎NaturallyActiveforLifeVictoriaCounty‬ Proud to Be Invited & Attend the 2015-2016 ‪#‎BaddeckAcademy‬ ‪#‎AwardsNight‬ – “You support us in so many ways” – Barb MacDonald, Principal (June 10, 2016)

Great Accomplishments by so many students with so many activities, opportunities for students to participate in a variety of initiatives. Kudos to All!



5th Annual Victoria County Trails Day 2016 A Success


North River Falls (June 4th, 2016) with 14 Participants:

-31,500 Steps
-14.41 Miles
-5611 Calories Burned
-140 floors
-96 Heart Rate


Group Shot (s) from our 5th Annual ‪#‎VictoriaCounty‬ ‪#‎TrailsDay‬ (14th ‪#‎InternationalTrailsDay‬) at ‪#‎NorthRiverFalls‬ – June 4, 2016, it was greatly appreciatedwith ‪#‎social‬, ‪#‎nature‬, ‪#‎physicalactivity‬, physical activity, physical activity…great for the ‪#‎mentalhealth

Great ‪#‎NorthRiverFalls‬‪#‎Hike‬on ‪#‎VictoriaCounty‬‪#‎InternationalTrailsDay‬(5th Annual) & Guide Marshall Kaiser Proudly Presented by ‪#‎NaturallyActiveforLifeVictoriaCountyThank You Everyone for a Memorable Experience, social & ‪#‎PhysicalActivity

Thank You again – (Thank You Marshall Kaiser for the pics & guiding)
-On ‪#‎NationalHealthandFitnessDay‬+ #InternationalTrailsDay – June 2016

Thank You Wallace Matthew for the pics & Video!

Keep up the good work Vince, all the best to you & yours” – Merrill MacInnis, Municipal Councilor (June 8, 2016)

That is a wonderful testimonial! Thank you for sharing😄” – Patsy MacKenzie (June 10, 2016)

Hi Vince, I saw some pictures from the hikes and they looked great. You’re doing a fabulous job!” – Lisa Finney (June 9, 2016)

“Wow – great shots and a nice turn-out!” – Janet Barlow, Executive Director – Hike Nova Scotia (June 7, 2016)

Awesome pictures! Thank you so much. Really enjoyed the hike – thanks Marshall!” – Veronika, Sofia & Dorena Brzeski (June 5, 2016)

Lindsey Dauphney  – “Awesome pic guys!” (June 7, 2016)

@gammaboxer: “Group shot from Saturdays (North River Falls) Hike” @PAStrategyVC @ourbaddeck

Dear Vince and Marshall and Wally, Thank you so much for guiding our hike to North River Falls on June 4, 2016. Vince, you have been the subject of much positive discussion down here on the North Shore–most recently after church on Sunday, as Marion Thompson, Dianne Grant, and I huddled together and praised your work as our county’s activity coordinator. You are a low-key, easygoing, encouraging booster. Your presence on that hike–and on all the hikes you attend–is a bit of quiet power under our feet and inour hearts. Thank you, also, for forwarding all those wonderful photos to each of us. 

Marshall, you are a dream guide and hike leader! Your endless good cheer, your reminders of how far we had come and how well we were doing, your lying about how far we still had to go (!), your watchfulness, your hand over rough places, your care along vertical drops, your quiet passion for this activity, your hopefulness about your future here–you kept our minds at peace and our hearts strong. And thank you for going to the trouble of taking and then sending out all those wonderful photographs.  

Wally, I am so glad you made the effort to drive out to the Oregon Road and join our trek. I look forward to hiking with you again some day, next time I get up the courage and make the time. As I clambered over rocks, your outstretched hand made it all easy. You are clearly a careful, skilled, alert, and encouraging presence, to be wished for at any outdoor activity. I hope the Spinnagan was a pleasure, and that you have pleasant adventures with many other people in the days ahead. And that you can stay in our county and be a quiet force for good. 

I just keep telling everyone that I was accompanied Saturday on a hike with four (counting Danny Keigan, whom I don’t know at all) of the gentlest men with whom I have ever spent time in the woods. Stay safe! And many more to come!” – Bonnie Thompson, Indian Brook 7, 2016) – “Yes, Vince, share my praise around. That’s fine. And those are the thoughts of more people than just me! – Bonnie Thompson (June 8, 2016)

Thanks for sharing Vince! Great job by you and Wally. Top class” – Larry Maxwell, Cape Breton Regional Rep, NS Dept Comm, Culture & Heritage – (June 9, 2016)

Enjoyed ‪#‎Spinnigans‬ ‪#‎Hike‬ with 14 Participants – June 5, 2016 – 5th Annual ‪#‎VictoriaCounty‬ ‪#‎TrailsDay‬ – Thank You All & Guide Brigitta Buehlman on a fantastic wrap to Trails Day Celebrations Wknd

‪#‎NaturallyActiveforLifeVictoriaCounty‬‪#‎PhysicalActivityStrategy‬‪#‎NovaScotia‬‪#‎NSTrails‬‪#‎HikeNS‬#Hike ‪#‎InternationalTrailsDay‬‪#‎CabotTrail‬‪#‎CapeBretonIsland‬‪#‎TourismCB‬‪#‎Trails‬‪#‎Outdoors‬‪#‎Nature‬‪#‎Adventure‬‪#‎GaelicSingersHall

Yvonne MegensIt was amazing! Going back very soon!” (June 6, 2016)

Jenn AndersonAmazing!” (June 6, 2016) 

“Thanks for sending along the photos (5th Trails Day)! Glad the events went well. If you ever have something happening that you want us to promote on social media feel free to drop me an email. We’d be more than happy to share” – Cory Richard, NS Trails, Communications & Office Assistant (June 7, 2016) 

 “Hi Vince – It was a great day up (5th Trails Day) at the spinnigan (‘s Trail)” – Brigitte Buehlmann, Guide (June 06, 2016)

Thanks again for your support – A HUGE Thank You to Our Supporters: Naturally Active for Life Victoria County & NS “Thrive” – Linda Murray (North Highlands Nordic) : May 4, 2016

4th Annual Baddeck Academy Health & Wellness Fair 2016 A Success

(May 18th) was ‪#‎BaddeckAcademy‬4th Annual ‪#‎HealthandWellnessFair‬2016

‪#‎Students‬, ‪#‎staff‬& ‪#‎community‬come together, had tons of fun, and learn a about leading a ‪#‎healthyactivelifestyle‬. The day was a grand success, and that’s almost an understatement.


“Hi Vince – The Health & Wellness Fair was a HUGE success once again!” –  Karen Welton, (Organizer-Baddeck Academy Teacher), June 8, 2016

With the help of an amazing staff, the day (May 18, 2016) ran seemlessly and presenters commented on the wonderful behavior of our students. But beyond that was the ‪#‎magic‬ of the day… when some 250 staff & students rested in “savasna” after being led through a ‪#‎yoga‬ routine… when #students sang in unison a little ‪#‎gaelic‬ tune to the beat of their hands at the ‪#‎millingfrolic‬…when the Grade 12s led a dance where they all held hands, boys & girls together, as the entire school chimed in and copied their actions… when a certain little student was tickled pink to have won a lunchbox container… and truthfully I could go on…Many thanks to our 23 presenters, our Parent group, all the students, all the staff and ‪#‎NaturallyActiveforLifeVictoriaCounty‬, who partnered on the initiative” — Karen Welton, Event Organizer (Baddeck Academy)

Baddeck Clean-up May 14, 2016



ShaunackieCircuitGymBeginner Yoga – Englishtown: Spring 2016

We had fourteen participants last night (May 3, 2016 with Certified Instructor) Patsy (MacKenzie) & our Beginner Yoga (Program). Everyone thoroughly enjoyed it. Thank you for your support” – Connie MacAskill (Giant MacAskill Heirs Association)
Tuesdays – Beginner Yoga
7:00 pm, #ShaunackieHall (behind the #GiantMacAskillMuseum).
Fee: Only $8/per class -Some mats available, or bring your own and some water
Proudly Supported By ‎#NaturallyActiveforLifeVictoriaCounty‬ in Partnership with ‎#GiantMacAskillHeirsAssocation‬ ‪‎#VictoriaCountyPhysicalActivityStrategy‬ #‎MPAL‬ ‎#Englishtown‬ ‪‎#VictoriaCounty‬ #‎CabotTrail‬ #‎Yoga


#‎NaturallyActiveVictoriaCounty‬is a Proud Partner of ‪#‎BaMCapeBreton‬ (Since 2012) Benefiting Our ‪#‎Youth‬in ‪#‎VictoriaCounty‬and all of ‪#‎CapeBreton‬:

Conference – ‪#‎EskasoniApril 15-17, 2016 Successful:

#NaturallyActiveVictoriaCounty is a Proud Partner of BaM Cape Breton (Since 2012)

Well said:
Today – “Perfect day! The best BaM Cape Breton day ever!” You know your job is incredible when you get to spend a weekend in Eskasoni with youth from all around the island who are incredibly positive leaders for their communities. Youth can’t be the leaders of the future if they don’t have opportunities to build leadership skills today” – Wayne MacKay, Cape Breton Regional Physical Activity Consultant (April 16, 2016)

#BaM #CapeBreton Partnership Testimonials from De-briefing in #Wagmatcook, #VictoriaCounty (today – May 24, 2016) of Spring 2016 Conference Held in #Eskasoni:
•”Went exceptionally well; Really enjoyable; Mentors; Wonderful time; Positive feedback; Kids (Host committee) did an amazing job – hospitality & all teams that participated; all activities went well; liked all the cultural activities; Welcome baskets were well received along with Field Goods Wall and take home / keepers” / •”Elder Speaker talking of the history of #MiKmaw left a lasting impression with me” – Look for a great B.a.M Camp Fall 2016 – Details tba. Participants, teams do not want to miss this one!
#NaturallyActiveforLifeVictoriaCounty #Eskasoni #Waycobah #Membertou #NSDeptCommunitiesCultureHeritage #CBVRSB…/bam-cape-breton/


Bring Back Play with Old-Fashioned Pond Hockey HELD at the Rink!
A Big Thank You to Dr. John Ritter, Palliative Care and ALL Partners for their support:
Downloadable Schedule Included:



Looking for in-service activities for you and your family?

“Bring Back Pond Hockey Family Play” with Old Fashioned Pond Hockey at the Rink – Sessions HELD FREE:

  • November 27, 2015
    11:00 am – 1:00 pm
  • December 11, 2015
    11:00 am – 1:00 pm
  • December 23, 2015
    1:00 – 3:00 pm
  • February 15, 2016
    1:00 – 3:00 pm
Taking a shot at putting the fun back in hockey… We hear about a program called “Bring Back Pond Hockey”, organizer Andrew MacDonald gives us the skinny on some games of shinny planned for the Baddeck Rink (Victoria Highland Civic Centre) this Winter. Everyone welcome! (runs 6:46)

Please note: ***Parents must have stick and helmet; Children youth must have stick and helmet with full cage

Proudly Supported by Your Partners in Your Health:
-Dr. John Ritter
-Naturally Active Victoria County
-Victoria Highland Civic Centre
-Victoria County
-NS Thrive! A plan for a healthier Nova Scotia
-NS Health & Wellness Active Living Branch

Northern Victoria Community Centre

What an awesome weekend of hockey. Congrats to the winners The Aspey Bay Pirates, to the runners up The Young Outlaws, third place team The Bay Bruins also great show for The Rubber Duckies and The Misfits. A big shoutout to all the volunteers who made it all possible. We would also like to thank Naturally Active Victoria County for their support for this event. Hope to see all the teams again next year  (April 17, 2016)

The NVCC would like to wish all teams taking part in the tournament good luck. We would also like to thank all the volunteers to help around the Centre to get it ready for the weekend. Also we would like to thank Naturally Active Victoria County for their support toward our event this weekend. Again good luck to all and enjoy (April 16, 2016)

They were successful (5th Annual Victoria County Canada Day Weekend Physical Activity Challenge 2016) but would not be very profitable without assistance. Thanks for everything” – Robin Stuart (Sept. 1, 2016)

Naturally Active Victoria County Hosted Hiking / Trails Guru Michael Haynes – 3 Presentations in Victoria County April 6 & 7, 2016:

CBC’s Information Morning Sydney, NS Steve Sutherland Interviewed Michael Haynes Before his Victoria County Stop on April 6th:

(1.) Seniors Luncheon

April 6, 2016

St Ann’s Bay United Church Hall

#‎NaturallyActiveVictoriaCounty‬ Glad to see Participants Enjoyed ‪#‎MichaelHaynes‬ Presentation at St. Ann’s Seniors Luncheon

Great crowd, social, food, presentation with great feedback. Kudos to all involved and thank you for the nice comments on a nice initiative

‪#‎HikeNS‬ ‪#‎NSTrails‬ ‪#‎VictoriaCounty‬ ‪#‎Trails‬ ‪#‎Hiking

North Victoria Library, Ingonish

(2.) April 6, 2016 – 6:30 pm

#‎NaturallyActiveVictoriaCounty‬ Proud to Host ‪#‎MichaelHaynes‬ ‪#‎Hiking‬ & ‪#‎Trails‬ Guru Who Presented at the ‪#‎VictoriaNorthRegionalLibraryBranch‬ in ‪#‎Ingonish‬ “Best of the ‪#‎TCT‬ ‪#‎TransCanadaTrail‬,”

Thank You Librarian Leona for making this happen! Turned out great. We wish to thank participants of the great comments on the presentation. but also the nice comments on the work of #NaturallyActiveVictoriaCounty (Est. 2011) – ‪#‎VictoriaCounty‬ ‪#‎PhysicalActivityStrategy‬ it’s greatly appreciated. Vince Forrestall, Coordinator

Baddeck Public Library

(3.) April 7, 2016 – 6:30 pm

Thanks Vince for tonight’s meeting – it was great” – Athol Grant (District 2 – Councilor)

Pleasure to have ‪#‎MichaelHaynes‬Presenting at the ‪#‎BaddeckLibrary‬the final of 3 ‪#‎NaturallyActiveVictoriaCounty‬Hosted. Thank you to all who participated, each venue/organization & Michael. Very successful. THANK YOU Kate Oland, Cora-Lee & your team at the Baddeck Library in allowing us to do this, it’s greatly appreciated: “Thanks Vince for tonight’s meeting-it was great” – Athol Grant (District 2 Councilor)

We look forward to more presentations in the future on very topics benefiting you & your health‪#‎VictoriaCounty‬‪#‎TCT‬‪#‎TransCanadaTrail‬‪#‎NSTrails‬‪#‎HikeNS‬. ‪#‎Hiking‬‪#‎Trails‬‪#‎Cycling‬‪#‎PhysicalActivity‬‪#‎CBRL‬#BaddeckLibrary ‪#‎StAnnsSeniorsLuncheons

Presentation Title: The Best of the Trans Canada Trail in Eastern Canada.

Bio Sketch: Since starting hiking at the relatively late age of 31, Michael has hiked in every province in Canada, many parts of the U.S., Australia, and several countries in Europe and Asia. An inability to find accurate trail information lead to his first book, Hiking Trails of Nova Scotia, 7th edition, and since then, nine others. He has been a regular contributor to CBC Radio, and has published numerous articles about Canada’s outdoors, both locally and nationally. Michael has also been a presenter at the Canadian, Australian, and American national trail conferences. In addition to writing, Michael works in trail development and active transportation. He has been as a member of the consulting team producing trail plans for Sault Ste. Marie, Chatham-Kent, and North Grenville, and active transportation/bike plans for Oromocto, Corner Brook,Lunenburg, and Essex County. Michael tries to walk every day: In the three years, 2010-2015, he walked/ran 31,800,000 steps, or 26,700 km – a daily average of more than 12 km. When not hiking, he orienteers, runs, bikes, cross-country skis, and otherwise keeps active.

We had a good 8-hr snowshoe orienteering event in Wentworth on Feb. 6, 2016. If you want to see some pictures:

Have fun, see you (relatively) soon. Michael Haynes – Nova Scotia, Canada – p: 902.478.1863 / e-mail: / tel #: @HikerHaynes




THANK YOU for Making the 5th Annual Victoria County Winter ActiveFest 2016 A Success

A BIG THANK YOU To Our Partners in Health:
-Victoria County Volunteers, Leaders, Organizations, Service Providers & Facility Operators
-Naturally Active Victoria County (Est. 2011)
-Victoria County
-Destination Cape Breton

-Rhonda Douglas Cardwell “Your fun activities make me wish that we lived up there in the winter!” (Feb. 2, 2016)

-Lars Willum “Great to see all those winter activities in our County:)” (Feb. 2, 2016)

-Howard MacKinnon “Nice shot (Ingonish River Snowshoe-see attached) Vince these folks stayed at our cottages (Knotty Pines) they were great!” (Feb. 21)

“Thanks so much Vince! It was a great day, and everything went so well. Hopefully it continues to get bigger and better for years to come. Thank you for you support, and I look forward to working with you again” – Cyril MacDonald – 5th Annual JJ McDermott Long John Jaunt 2016, Ross Ferry, Victoria County

5th Annual #‎MiddleRiver‬ ‪#‎Baddeck‬ Old Time Commute ‪#‎Snowshoe‬ Trek 2016 HELD March 6, 2016:


-“Hi Vince, Thanks for all the photos. It was a great hike. It was certainly a day I will remember for years to come. Great people, perfect conditions and good food! Thanks again for a memorable day! Hope to see u again on the trail! Take care” – Annie Maxwell (March 7, 2016)

– “Tks it was fun

– “Your organization skill paid off. Great day, Great people, exceptional conditions

-“Thanks for the pictures! I really enjoyed it, and I will be ready for the next hike!”

-“Thanks for sending all the photos!”

-“Thanks for facilitating a truly wondrous experience for me today, a bit of every type of outdoor hike; both against and with the elements, and with other hikers and alone in the woods  Very beautiful Winter’s day with a scrumptious ending chez George & Cora Lee…It is was a real work-out, proud to have completed it all! Thank you Thank you

-“Thanks for the photo. It as an enjoyable hike and a nice meal too

-“As you said:  Team work – I guess that keeping good relationships with “doers” is the secret. Doers usually show up among the crowd.  All one need to do is supporting their initiatives. You already have the recipe and you handle it very well“.


“I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you for attending this year’s Health Fair at CBU (Feb. 3, 2016).  We received a lot of positive feedback from students and staff on the various booths, and they felt the information you provided was very informative. Thanks once again for your participations, and we hope you’ll join us again next year!” – Dawn MacDougall, Dawn MacDougall, Executive Assistant, CBU Students’ Union (Feb. 5, 2016)

Nice comment from Yolande LeVert, Velo Cape Breton, Health Fair at CBU (Feb. 3, 2016) You are doing a great job in promoting physical activity in Victoria County” – Naturally Active Victoria County

They were successful (5th Annual Victoria County Canada Day Weekend Physical Activity Challenge 2016) but would not be very profitable without assistance. Thanks for everything” – Robin Stuart (Sept. 1, 2016)

Spring 2016 Navigation Course A Success

Thank You to Instructor Minga O’Brien & All Participants on Completing the Very Successful 2nd Navigation Course April 9 & 10, Baddeck Forks
Naturally Active Victoria County (Est. 2011) is Working For You & Your Health with “Skill Development” Opportunities like this
Course Testimonials:
I’m thankful to Minga O’Brien and the Victoria County Physical Activity Strategy for offering a free, two-day navigation course. My husband and older son attended, and enjoyed themselves immensely. Liam learned a lot about using a map and compass, and GPS – both useful skills that boosted his understanding of both geography and math. I’m glad Brooke and Liam had some time to learn and hang out together, and grateful that the County is supporting positive activities like this one” – Kate Oland – Participant (April 10, 2016)
awesome!”– Jane Maree
Great class!” – Mb Whitcomb (Participant)
Thanks Kate Oland, and thanks Vince Forrestall for making the navigation course possible. Happy to hear Brooke & Liam enjoyed it” – Minga O’Brien (Course Leader)

10 participants Feb. 18, 2016 at the Gourd O’l Time Workshop last night…Great comments:

Great time, social, skill development, leadership (Georgia-Thank You) etc. at the ‪#‎GourdeOlTimeWorkshop yesterday evening at the ‪#‎BaddeckCommunityCentre with lots of great comments on the session, while asking for more of the same in the future…

Proudly Supported By:





Recipes of the Workshop can be found at the following link (Feb. 18th – Under Gourde O’l Time Workshop):

Thanks for your support!” Errol MacInnis, Tim Hortons Baddeck (Nov. 22, 2016)

Nice to lead (Vince Forrestall -Naturally Active Victoria County) a great program ‪#‎SundaysOnSnow‬ with super participants enjoying social, ‪#‎physicalactivity‬ with nice scenery in a great place we live, play, work ‪#‎VictoriaCounty‬ ‪#‎CapeBretonIsland‬ ‪#‎novascotiawinter‬ 3 degrees, yesterday (Jan. 31, 2016) ‪#‎winterwonderland‬ – the drive to was just worth the trip. Thank you all, including sweeper Marshall Kaiser and Eileen Woodford for the opportunity. Appreciated. “Looks like Vince & Marshall (Kaizer) led the group of 12 through an enchanted forest this afternoon. The woods were marshmallow coated, and frozen falls spectacular. Thanks so much Vince and Marshall! Looked like it was wonderful to be in the woods today” – Eileen Woodford, Program Leader.


Great Testimonial-“Morning watering of seeds planted at the Up!Skilling Food Festival yesterday — please let these make it to transplanting, and even better, to eating! A fantastic event put together by ACAP Cape Breton, New Dawn, and a host of other sponsors. Last year’s festival led to my first raised garden bed….this year I promise not to forget about everything I plant” – Monika Dutt (Apr. 18, 2016)

CommunityWellnessRoomBaddeckEntryCommunity Wellness Room – Baddeck Academy (Season 4 completed: 2015 – 16)

Lisa DixonIt’s a great facility with good leadership. Would love to see it continue” (April 19, 2016) 

I had the pleasure of using the gym at the (Baddeck Academy) school last night for the first time. Great facility and seemed to be in high demand last night as there were 7 people there during the time I was there. So job well done on this…job well done and look forward to making it part of my workout regiment” – thanks Katie (Feb. 2, 2016)

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you for attending this year’s Health Fair at CBU (Feb. .  We received a lot of positive feedback from students and staff on the various booths, and they felt the information you provided was very informative. Thanks once again for your participations, and we hope you’ll join us again next year!” – Dawn MacDougall, Executive Assistant, CBU Students’ Union (Feb. 5, 2016)

Lars WillumGreat to see all those winter activities in our County:)” – Feb. 2, 2016

AMANSVictoriaCountyAwardOctober2015Municipality of the County of Victoria received the highest number of award points for their outstanding health and wellness accomplishments (Municipal Wellness Awards 2015). One of their greatest accomplishments over the past years has been the approval of their Employee Active Living Subsidization Program” – AMANS Municipal Newsletter (Municipal Highlights of the Month – Nov. 2015)

Last night I had the wonderful experience of leading beautiful people through their practice of yoga in Cape North. Thank you to Vince Forrestall and Rose Mary for supporting a healthful way of being to the community. Wednesday’s at 4pm for 7 more weeks. Namaste” – Faye Chipchase May 21, 2015

Successful Snowshoes 2016

7 participated in the March 13, 2016 Hike NS Winter Guided Hike series on Skyline Trail, CBHNP in partnership with Naturally Active Victoria County 7.3 kms; 2 hrs 40 min’s – also St Ann’s Saturday Afternoon Guided Snowshoe Hike included a snowshoe to a favorite; Spinnigan’s March 12, 2016 Breton Cove with 22 participants 5.36 kms; 1 hr 50 min snowshoe led by Brigitte Beuhman


Victoria County Municipal Council has Proclaimed June 4th  National Health and Fitness Day in Victoria County
Victoria County, Cape Breton (Nova Scotia) Municipal Council at their May 30, 2016 bi-weekly  Council Meeting Proclaimed June 4th National Health & Fitness Day for Victoria County

On behalf council ,Vince , you are most welcome. Thanks for bringing the proclamation to Victoria County” – Warden, Bruce Morrison (June 1, 2016)

STRATEGY CELEBRATION – With Olympian: 2 Time Gold Medalist-Flag Bearer Heather Moyse (October 20 & 21, 2014)

Karen Breen WeltonWish she could come back and speak again! She was amazing!” (Sept. 14, 2017)

CelebrationBruceMorrisonWarden of Victoria County: Bruce Morrison with Heather Moyse-Gold Medalist

CelebrationBaddeckAcademyBaddeck Academy – Oct. 20, 2015


2 Time Gold Medalist & Flag Bearer Heather Moyse Presents To Schools During “Celebration” Oct 20 & 21, 2014
Rankin School @RankinSchool – “No Regrets” @HeatherMoyse explains her motto as no excuses. We make choices that help us write our story – Believe in the Possibilities.” @PAStrategyVC

Naturally Active – Celebrating 3 Years (2011 to 2014)

Heather Led Interactive Races During Her Presentations – this one at Cabot School (Oct. 20th)


HI Vince. Happy New Year!!!! I’m so glad that I was able to be a part of the Celebration, and hopefully help in vamping up the exciting surrounding the Strategy! I hope you are doing well, and that 2015 has started off as a wonderful year for you, with lots of promise ahead. Smiles”…. Heather Live to inspire! @HeatherMoyse

CelebrationWagmatcookGroupShotWagmatcookewey School CelebrationRankinSchooloftheNarrowsandHeatherMoyseOct202014Rankin School of the Narrows


Perfect Day to be Outdoors & Naturally Active-North Highlands Nordic Open House 2016
What makes a perfect day in January (2016) in Northern Cape Breton?
-Around 120 eager participants found the answer to that question on Sunday January 10, 2016. North Highlands Nordic Ski Club hosted their annual Open House under sunny skies and near perfect conditions. Anyone wanting to go for a ski could do so for free thanks to the support of the Naturally Active Victoria County (Municipal Physical Activity Strategy Est. 2011) Program.
-First time skiers and experienced skiers from 2 years to 75yrs enjoyed the trails groomed by the dedicated volunteer groomers Dan McNeil and Maurice Curtis. Almost all the trails were open and in good condition. Inside the heated ski room Alison Fraser, the paid worker, had help from several volunteers making sure everyone had the right equipment. After their adventure, happy skiers and snowshoers gathered in the heated ski room to enjoy a snack.
-The Open House was an opportunity to let everyone learn about all the winter activities provided by NHN Ski Club. There is something for everyone.
• The ski room is open daily from 10 to 5 pm.
• Ski rentals and day passes are available for regular skiers- a season pass and season rentals are more cost effective.
• Special family rates.
• The Jack Rabbit learn to ski program for grades primary to 6
• the Jack Bunny program for ages 3 (as of Dec 31/15 )and 4 yrs olds
• Both programs starts January 17 and runs for 10 weeks weather permitting.
• Track Attack is for young skiers age 10 and up interested in racing All the instructors are volunteers.
• The School Ski Program is another opportunity for young skiers to experience the fun of winter.
• For the grown up skiers there is the Ski and Snowshoe and Tea every Tuesday morning. Ski club member are always willing to give some help for first time skiers or snowshoers Bring your lunch and join everyone in the ski room and share a cup of tea.
• Information on all the programs can be found on the ski club website at or by calling 902.383.2479.
-Special events are also happening this winter.
• The Provincial Cross Country Championships will bring skiers from around NS January 30 and 31. There is a special recreational category this year for those not ready to compete against the top in the province.
• February 14, in partnership with Hike NS and Victoria County Naturally Active, there is a Adult Snowshoe and Fondue.
• The Ski Loppet, a citizen event for all abilities will be held March 13.
• Daniel Murray, the Provincial Cross Country Ski Coach is offering an Introduction to Community Coaching course for those who want to get involved teaching their own children or helping out with the children’s programs.
-Attending all or some of the activities at North Highlands Nordic will make a perfect winter for everyone! – Prepared & Presented By Rosemary Algar, North Highlands Nordic & Resident of Victoria County (Jan. 14, 2016)

Re-connecting to Nature Cape Breton Region Workshop Hosted by Naturally Active Victoria County – Spring 2015



Navigation Course (Nov. 14 & 15, 2015) – Baddeck Forks

NavigationCoursePictureNov1415Fall2015Here is a photo of the Navigation Course Group (Nov. 14 & 15, 2015). Thanks so much for the informative weekend. You (Minga O’Brien) did a great job & I think everyone enjoyed it” – Thanks, David Quimby (Participant)

Vince, Just wanted to mention that the (Navigation) course (Nov 14 & 15, 2015) was just what I needed. Minga did a great job with a group that was of different experience levels. Location was great. Thanks” – Spencer Wadden (Participant) Nov. 23, 2015

Navigation Course Evaluations:

Learned many helpful and useful skills that I would not have been able to learn on my own; Absolutely – excellent material & Instructor-very informative & practical; Vince Forrestall was very helpful; Excellent was to navigate properly-great; This was a great course & presentation was well done-especially for beginners; Vince was quick to respond – it was clear as to everything needed to do / bring-easy/well done; Minga O’Brien/great instructor/knowledgeable/good pace of teaching/if needed clarification Minga provided further instruction were both extremely helpful/everything useful; and quick to respond via e-mail/prompt to my inquiries and info was promptly sent;-well done-perfect; Loved what we learned; We were given everything needed to exceed-wonderful; Great space (Facility) Comfortable-wonderful area to learn; It was great/perfect instruction, no complaints; Loved that we did mix of class work & work outdoors-cool to put into practice what you learned in class; A great learning experience, 100%-I was not too knowledgeable on this topic, I feel much more prepared to go on a hike; Fun/Informative/useful; an absolutely excellent wonderful course/learning experience; very well done/useful; Would highly recommend. Empowering as a woman taught by a woman; lots of fun; Thank You“.

Activator Walking Pole Research Project

Research Sub-Committee: John Hudec and Kathryn Gwynn-Brett reported that the activator walking pole research project had 15 women over the age of 55. The seventh class just finished. There was good participation with a minimum of twelve participants each week. Vince Forrestall, Naturally Active Victoria County provided $500 for the purchase of pedometers which have been great motivators. Kathryn will be doing the final reassessments over the next few weeks with the hope of being completed by Christmas. She indicated that stride length has been noted to have a high correlation with falls risk; participants in this research project have been noting an increase in their stride length with use of the walking poles.John has been sending data collected to a student for analysis. Discussion regarding what to do with the research: share locally, use to recruit for future programs, present to interdisciplinary council, reach out to elderly community dwellers. Query any elder friendly initiatives within the Eastern Zone, NSHA etc. Eileen Woodford (Chair-Rural Chronic Disease Committee)thanked John and Kathryn for their perseverance with the research study. (Nov. 30, 2015)

Our first Sq. dance at the South Haven Community Hall was tonight (Jan. 26, 2016)…….25 attended…some more hope to be there next week….two hours of dancing is a great work out and a lot of fun…Thanks for your support“-Cheers Jim Eldridge, South Haven Community Hall

North Highlands Nordic Successful Open House Held – January 10, 2016

What a fantastic day we had today with over 100 participants at  our open house!” – North Highlands Nordic

Hi Vince, Thanks for coming to our Open House.  Jenna is a sweetheart! We had at least 110 participants when all was said and done.  We tried to showcase what we have to offer hoping to interest individuals in the youth programs, season passes and our other upcoming events” – Linda Murray, North Highlands Nordic (Jan 11, 2016)

NHNOpenHouse2016 / NHNOpenHouse2016PDF

North Highlands Nordic In Cape North in partnership with Naturally Active Victoria County offered an experience of fantastic cross country skiing & snowshoeing:

Complimentary use of:

  • Ski Trails
  • Ski equipment
  • Snowshoes

Learned about NHN programs and events:

  •  Bunny Rabbit Program for preschoolers
  • Jackrabbits for elementary students
  • Track Attack racing program
  • Tuesdays Ski Snowshoe & Tea for adults

Open House 2016 was Proudly Presented by Proud Partners in Your Wellness:

  • North Highlands Nordic
  • Naturally Active Victoria County
  • Victoria County
  • NS “Thrive”
  • NS Health & Wellness Active Living Branch

2nd Annual Merry 7mas Free Family Skates 2015 HELD


Download Schedule:

Victoria Highland Civic Centre (Baddeck Rink)
2nd Annual “Merry 7mas Free Family Skates” Were Proudly Presented by Your Partners in Wellness:
• Midway Motors
• Naturally Active Victoria County
• Victoria County
• Tim Hortons
• Victoria Highland Civic Centre
• NS Thrive
• NS Health & Wellness Active Living Branch

BOWSHats off to your organization encouraging and make programs affordable for individuals and families – We have a full workshop for 2016 Winter BOW (Feb. 19-21, 2016, St.Ann’s – Gaelic College)  Participants come from all parts of Nova Scotia from Cape Breton County through to Mainland.  Thanks again” – Cheers, Gail Holman (February-19-2016)

Naturally Active for Life Victoria County On RNS Conference Committee 2013

The Annual Grant Potter Memorial Hockey Tournament 2013 – Centre 200 

Hockey organized by Vince Forrestall, Coordinator – Naturally Active Victoria County

RNS Delegates Defeat CBRM Police/Firefighters in a Shoot-out

The annual Grant Potter Memorial Hockey Tournament took place Tuesday Night at Centre 200 as part of Recreation NS Conference 2013 at Sydney.

New uniforms were introduced, a video of Grant was shown, official dropping of the puck with two former nhl oldtimers. The Cape Breton Tradesmen Major Midget Hockey Players refereed the game.

Grant Potter was the Recreation Director of the town of Annapolis Royal. Grant was tragically killed in a motorcycle accident on Parker Mountain Road. He left behind a wife, Gina, and his children.

In addition to his day job, Grant helped out in so many other ways around our community from helping to organize the Fun Day at our local elementary school to helping out with the dancing in the Farmers’ Market.

SUCCESSFUL RNS Conference 2013 Tradeshow HELD

Organized by Vince Forrestall, Coordinator – Naturally Active for Life Victoria County



FallFitnessFairHuckleBuckleOctober2015Naturally Active Victoria County Proud Supporters in Partnership of the Fall Fitness Fair 2015



Santa’s Workshop 2015 – Bay St Lawrence

I Jeannie want to thank everyone who donated items of all sizes and shapes to make our 2nd Santa`s Workshop a success again this year. Thanks to Vince Forrestall (Naturally Active Victoria County) and his team of partners who donated snacks and fresh fruit to help Santa`s workshop happen. We had a lot of kids and Youth and friends and family who came today to have a great time watching and talking to kids and youth. I love seeing all ages enjoying what our community has to offer which is the support of the community at all times. Amy Fraser MacKinnon and Corrine Mac Kinnon prob have sore fingers from all the wrapping they did for the kids.LOL. My kids are slowly growing up on me so it was nice to sit and talk to the younger kids as they did their crafts I miss those days. P.S Thanks to Trix Mackinnon and Frankie Mac Kinnon for setting up yesterday and lugging boxes with me .Love yas. See you all NEXT YEAR same place and same time” – Jeannie Bonnar (Dec. 19, 2015).

Local Yoga Books for Victoria County Children & Youth

YogaBooksBaddeckAcademyfall2015Resident Patsy MacKenzie – Published a Yoga Book Circulated locally and to local residents.

Picture at Baddeck Academy to borrow the Kids Yoga Book. Angela Currie, Boularderie Principal took another photo on her camera at Boularderie School of the 1st 4 students to borrow the book. Kids were super excited to have it to take home. Thank you for your support!” – Patsy MacKenzie,, Certified Yoga Instructor & Member of the Strategy Implementation Team VCAN (Victoria County Action Network) Representing Big Bras d’Or

Naturally Active for Life Victoria County is a Proud Supporter in partnership with CBVRSB, Baddeck Academy, Boularderie School, Victoria County.


40 Attended Free “Christmas Family Skating Party” November 28, 4:30 – 6:00 pm – timbits. hot chocolate, candy canes and Christmas music were made available. Victoria Highland Civic Centre (Baddeck Rink) as part of the 2nd Annual Victoria County Mas Skates. “Merry 7mas Free Family Skates” Were Proudly Presented by Partners in Health: Midway Motors; Naturally Active Victoria County; Victoria County; Tim Hortons; Victoria Highland Civic Centre; NS Thrive; NS Health & Wellness Active Living Branch

SUCCESSFUL 2nd Annual Merry 7mas Free Family Skates Held 2015



Victoria Highland Civic Centre (Baddeck Rink)
“Merry 7mas Free Family Skates” are Proudly Presented by Your Partners in Health:
• Midway Motors
• Naturally Active Victoria County
• Victoria County
• Tim Hortons
• Victoria Highland Civic Centre
• NS Thrive
• NS Health & Wellness Active Living Branch

Successful Skill Development Courses Held

CyclingJune2014Bike Maintenance and Basic Repairs & CAN-BIKE 1

Held June 6 – June 7 at Old Post Office – Baddeck

These sessions were for are for individuals 15 years of age and older who are cycling already and wanted to improve their skills and abilities. During the 3-hr Bike Maintenance & Basic Repairs session participants learned how to maintain and perform basic repairs on their own bicycle Review: brakes, drive train, wheels & tires, flats, clean and lube.

CAN-BIKE 1 is a nationally approved Safe Cycling Program to give participants more skills, knowledge as well as confidence which in turn heightens their overall cycling enjoyment.

CAN-BIKE 1 is a 9-hr, 3 parts program:

  1. In-Class, 2. Parking Lot Skill Builder, 3. On-the-road Confidence Builder

Went over many aspects of safe bicycling and introduce some new

concepts and information.

Program was offered FREE to citizens of Victoria County.

Presented by: Velo Cape Breton’s Jacques Coté, CB Instructor


High Five Sport Training


Held at Baddeck Academy, May 30th, 2015


A Field Leader – Hiking Course


Baddeck – June 13 & 4, 2015. St. Michael’s Parish Hall.

Provide participants with Outdoor Council of Canada (OCC) national certification in Field Leader – Hiking.

This includes skills to organize and lead others in a one day, educational or activity based experience in a natural environment.

The course was two full days in length and provided successful candidates with the necessary skills to be a confident hiking leader.  The program was suitable for hiking club leaders, trail group volunteers, recreation department staff, teachers, 4H leaders, Scout and Guide leaders, parents or individuals interested in leading hikes. Courses are taught by OCC certified instructors.

The course was offered through Hike Nova Scotia in partnership with the Nova Scotia Chapter of the OCC, Naturally Active Victoria County, Victoria County and supported by NS Health and Wellness Active Living Branch

Naturally Active Proud To Support Exercise Classes in Dingwall

Exercise Classes held at the Capstick Manor in Dingwall started on March 31, 2015 and ended June 2nd, 2015. The average attendance was between 8 and 10 participants. All seniors were very pleased with the program-very much appreciated” – Rita Goodman & Mary Burton. Hats Off to Margrit Gallagher as well on her efforts in securing funding and being involved in the start-up, Naturally Active very proud to support to the success to all involved. Hats Off to All.


That is great. Thank you for organizing Vince” (Humes River Falls Hike) – May 30, 2015


Two 1 Year “JCP” Positions (Naturally Active Jan. 5, 2014 – December 2015)
Old Post Office Baddeck – 532 Chebucto Street 
  •  Iris Kedmi – Cape Breton Connect Marketing Coordinator 
  • Devon Pierre – Cape Breton Connect Data Entry Coordinator
Naturally Active Victoria County appreciated having these new positions provided by Employment NS (NS Labour & Advanced Education) through the Job Creation Program (JCP) benefiting residents through increased leadership and the development of an on-line data base for the Cape Breton Region – Cape Breton Connect.Further information forthcoming as initiatves come together.

Naturally Active Victoria County is a proud Partner of Cape Breton Connect and Partner in Your Health:

-NS Dept of Health & Wellness Active Living Branch

-Sport NS

-Victoria County

-Naturally Active Victoria County


-Inverness County

-Richmond County

-Port Hawkesbury

-Employment NS (NS Labour & Advanced Education)

Naturally Active Victoria County Celebrated NS Walk Day May 13, 2015

“Early Riser” – Highwheeler Café & “Noon Hour”  – Bean There

Proudly Supported by in Partnership



Walkabout Holiday Challenge 2016

The holidays can be a tough time to stay active and away from junk food. Beginning with the first holiday party and all the way through to our New Year’s resolutions we often find ourselves tempted by less than healthy food and lots of opportunities to make excuses to not work out. Why wait until January 1st to set a resolution to live an active and healthy lifestyle? Why not start right now? Let us help you with a pre holiday challenge…12 days of Healthy Living. The goal is not to avoid all fun activities but to remember to create opportunities each day to be healthy.

So what to do? Here is a 12 day challenge walkaboutholidaychallengens2016 .  Grab a buddy (or an elf) and agree to start on Dec 1 and keep going  until 12 days are over.

All you need to do is send an email to to let us know you are participating. No reporting needed. Just have some fun around your home or office! If you choose to let us know, we will put your name in the elf hat for a $25  certificate from a local grocery store.

Fell free to share with your networks!

Claire Mac Lean (Community Health Promotion Coordinator – Eastern Region)

Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, Nova Scotia

Park Lane – Mall Level 3, 5657 Spring Garden Road, Box 245

Halifax, NS B3J 3R4 / Phone: 1-800-423-4432ext-1137 | Fax: 902 492-1464 | E-mail Life. We don’t want you to miss it.TM That’s why we lead the fight against heart disease and stroke. Our new logo is the face of our deeper transformation and bolder resolve to push even harder, lead greater change and save more lives. See it at

Connect with us: Facebook | Twitter | YouTube | Instagram | LinkedIn

Walking Leader Virtual Training Held

Leading a walking group in workplace, neighborhood, or with your community group? Heart&Stroke Walkabout hosted VIRTUAL Leader Trainings April 14th that supports you in the role of volunteer walking leader. In this role you will inspire others to experience the joyful side of walking that comes from being part of a walking group. These Walkabout at Work leader training sessions happen from the comfort of your home or office for Community leaders. All you need is a computer with internet access and a phone. There is no charge to participate in this walking leader training. Please RSVP to E-mail us your contact information and we will find a time for you.

Claire Mac Lean, Community Health Promotion Coordinator, Eastern, Nova Scotia | Heart and Stroke Foundation

Park Lane – Mall Level 3 5657 Spring Garden Road, Box 245 Halifax, NS B3J 3R4 T 902 -334-1137 |  or 1-800-423-4432 ext 1137| /  /



#ForTheGirls Program went skating at the Baddeck Rink from 3:00 – 4:00 pm. It was for girls only in all grades? ***Skates & helmets were available if needed. You can reach Program Leader Lindsay MacInnis at 902.574.4041

Great program – it couldn’t have been easy to organize with all the different schedules but they totally enjoyed it – thanks to those who made it happen!” – Valerie Mason, Baddeck Academy Parent­


Held February 25, 2015 – Baddeck and Area / Ingonish and Area

WinterWalkDaytake the roof off winter2015 / WinterWalkDaytake the roof off winter2015PDF

Winter is a wonderful time to walk. Don’t let cold, wind, snow or rain keep you and your friends/co-workers from heading out for a walk and social. Just dress for the weather. Enjoy the many opportunities to go for a walk during our beautiful Canadian Winter and have a chance to win some swag:

-Kate Oland Librarian at Baddeck Library led a walk on Feb. 25 – Baddeck Library. Librarian Leona Stockley led a walk on Feb. 25 from the North Victoria Library.

We encouraged workplaces to lead a walk. Winter Walk Day is a partnership between Naturally Active Victoria County, Victoria County, Cape Breton Regional Library, CBVRSB, Active & Safe Routes to School, Heart & Stroke Walkabout™, and Take The Roof Off Winter. Take the Roof Off Winter is brought to you by Recreation Nova Scotia encouraging residents of all ages to winter walk.


Walkabout at Work Sites

Heart&Stroke Walkabout™ 6 week challenge entitled Walking Wednesdays Winter Challenge for workplaces.  To participate, a minimum of 3 employees from your worksite will commit to walk together (for at least 10 minutes) every Wednesday until February 25.  There will be weekly draws in addition to a grand prize draw for a healthy lunch for your walking team.

Its here – WALKING WEDNESDAY   Nice cool day so sneaker( check) Hat (check) Mittens (check). 2:45 front steps of the court house. Great way to help reach those 10000 steps per day. See you all there. PS . you can walk where ever you are today  as well just let me know how long.

Successful 2nd Wreck Cove Guided Hike Held 


Friday, March 18 – Proudly Supported by Naturally Active for Life Victoria County (Est. 2011)

Marcelle Lavoie led her 2nd hike (2013) to Wreck Cove Hydro for the Annual Victoria County Winter ActiveFest

Baddeck Community Wellness Room Concludes Yr 3 (2014-15)

Your Partners For Your Health: Victoria County, Naturally Active Victoria County, Thrive NS Obesity Strategy, NS Health & Wellness-Active Living Branch, CBVRSB, Baddeck Academy and Cape Breton Family Place Resource Centre

The Last day for the Baddeck Community Wellness Room 2014/15 was April 30th/2015. We returned Fall 2015 (Started Nov 12, 2015). Thank You to our Partners, Participants and leadership for another successful project benefiting residents & visitors of the area that accessed it.

Relay for Health 2012 – Bell Museum