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Fort to Fort - History and active living combine for Fort Anne to Port-Royal trek

Fort Anne in Annapolis Royal was the start and finish line for the Aug. 26 Fort to Fort Experience. Participants walked, ran, or biked from Fort Anne to Port-Royal and back in an active living Canada 150 event.
Fort Anne in Annapolis Royal was the start and finish line for the Aug. 26 Fort to Fort Experience. Participants walked, ran, or biked from Fort Anne to Port-Royal and back in an active living Canada 150 event.

ANNAPOLIS ROYAL - What happens when you combine active living and local history? A Canada 150 anniversary event called the Fort to Fort Experience.

People showed up at Fort Anne and walked, biked, or ran to the Habitation in Port Royal – and back again. There were 154 of them on Aug. 26. If you include the fact Tim Mullins of Granville Ferry both biked and walked the 25-kilometre return trip, 155 participants could be argued.

The Fort to Fort Experience was a cooperative project of Parks Canada, the Town of Annapolis Royal, and the County of Annapolis. The purpose was to showcase the region and its history including the two iconic forts, said Annapolis County recreation manager Debra Ryan, and to promote active healthy lifestyles on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of Confederation.

Parka the Beaver and Annapolis Royal active living coordinator Noah Scanlan help Fort to Fort Experience participants warm up before the 25-kilometre journey.

This year Fort Anne celebrates the 100th anniversary as the first national historic site in Canada. Last year the Habitation at Port-Royal celebrated the 75th anniversary of its reconstruction -- the official opening was July 4, 1941. The original Habitation was built in 1605 making the Granville Road the oldest settlement road in Canada.

Signed Up

"I never get tired of living in this county with so many beautiful landscapes and events,” said Annapolis County Councillor Marilyn Wilkins. “When the Fort to Fort Experience happened and it combined my love for walking and a chance to showcase our history I signed up right away.”

Annapolis County recreation manager Debra Ryan, left, with participants in the Fort to Fort Experience held Aug. 26.

Annapolis Royal’s active living coordinator Noah Scanlan and Parks Canada’s Parka the Beaver got participants warmed up with pre-event exercises at Fort Anne. Also on hand was Annapolis Royal Mayor Bill MacDonald and Parks Canada’s site and visitor experience manager Lillian Stewart.

Besides being a county councilor, Wilkins is chair of Annapolis County Heritage Advisory Committee. She, along with MacDonald and Stewart, brought greetings to the 154 participants.

Along the event route from Fort Anne to Port-Royal were rest stops at Granville Ferry Community Hall, North Hills Museum, and Granville Beach United Baptist Church.

“The weather cooperated and we hosted a ‘Good Cheer’ after party at the Annapolis Royal amphitheatre with music, food, and commemorative photo shoot by Dan Froese photography,” said Ryan.  “Participants walked away with instant pictures, t-shirt, certificate, stickers, and great memories.”

The Granville Ferry Community Hall was one of the rest stops along the way for participants in the Fort to Fort Experience Aug. 26. People walked, ran, or biked from Fort Anne to Port-Royal and back.
Biking participants of the Fort to Fort Experience leave Fort Anne on the trek to Port-Royal and the Habitation Aug. 26.

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