2019: The Lodge, Amherst Island, Ontario
Our 2019 theme highlighted island landscapes and dry stone walling craft and tradition. As always, the two-day festival was a mix of international guests, Dry Stone Canada members, local supporters, and our walling community. Master wallers created a bayside seating area, and participants attended a carving workshop under the pines, a curved wave wall workshop, and a historic restoration workshop close to The Lodge and our partner the Neilson Store Museum and Cultural Centre. The festival included Amherst Island food and craft vendors, heritage and community booths, and a children's/youth waller area!
2018: Farm to Table / Stone to Wall, Topsy Farms, Amherst Island, Ontario
Topsy Farms is a long-established sheep farm well known for their quality sheep, wool, and wool products. Using stone collected from the property, we built 120 feet of mixed granite/limestone wall near the barn, along the entrance to the farm. Farm to Table/Stone to Wall celebrated the roots of dry stone walling: building walls to support farming. Our 2018 theme highlighted the interconnection between local food and farmers and dry stone walling craft and tradition.
2017: St. Mark’s Anglican Church, Village of Barriefield, Ontario
The Frontenac Heritage Foundation and the Barriefield Village Association collaborated with Dry Stone Canada to restore a historic dry stone wall and gate at St. Mark’s Anglican Church to commemorate Canada’s 150th Anniversary. The site has historical significance in relation to the military base close by, CFB Kingston.
2016: Legacy Bridge, Stewart Park, The Town of Perth, Ontario
Dry Stone Canada collaborated with Algonquin College Heritage Trades and the Town of Perth to create a new legacy dry stone bridge and as well as a length of Scottish/Irish Wall in Stewart Park. The project was a huge success , with professional wallers attending from across our membership in Canada, in the US, Ireland, and Scotland, including the Queen’s Dry Stone Waller at Balmoral Castle. The build is now a significant permanent feature and attraction in the Town of Perth’s premier park. The project won an Honourable Mention Award at the Association of Municipalities of Ontario for 2016.
2015: Irish-Canadian Dry Stone Festival, Amherst Island, Ontario
Our third festival, and our largest, was a celebration of the Irish Canadian heritage of stone and music on Amherst Island.
Dry Stone Canada held the Irish-Canadian Dry Stone Festival to celebrate the large concentration of historic Irish dry stone walls on Amherst Island. Some are close to 200 years old and date back to the first waves of Irish settlers to reach the province. The Association was awarded the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario and Ontario Heritage Award for Excellence in Conservation in recognition of the Amherst Island Festival and the association’s involvement with restoring the Island’s historic Irish dry stone walls.