9 things you only did if you grew up on Canada’s east coast

This Opinion article is part of a Narcity Media series. The opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Narcity Media.

Growing up on the east coast of Canada is a very different experience from growing up in the rest of the country. I didn’t really understand how unique it was until I went to school in Ontario, then moved to the west coast — and found that no one could relate to my majors. childhood memories.

I grew up in Nova Scotia with my older brother, Connor, and my older sister, Emily. I moved to New Brunswick in college, so I was able to live all over the east coast.

Every time I come across an East Coaster in Vancouver — where I live now — there’s an instant connection. It’s an unspoken bond we all have, and it’s like finding a piece of home while we’re away.

My summers have been filled with ocean swims, sailboat trips, and Cows ice cream. Childhood winters were spent skiing in Wentworth, having huge snowball fights and many days of snow.

The problem with growing up on the East Coast is that there’s not much to do, so almost all the kids end up doing the same weekends, after-school outings, and adventures. summer.

No matter which maritime province you’re from – Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick or Nova Scotia – there’s no denying that we share some very specific nostalgia-inducing moments.

Newfoundlanders are also residents of the east coast, as a province of Atlantic Canada, but tend to have their own unique traditions on the island.

You’re not a real East Coast kid unless you can relate to at least a few of these things.

You went surfing or swimming in freezing water

Morgan Leet, as a child, overrated in Nova Scotia.

Morgan Leet | Narcity

This is me getting one of my first surf lessons from my dad – and I look pretty bored by the cold Atlantic Ocean.

Being directly on the ocean, it is very popular to catch waves at one of the East Coast beaches.

In Nova Scotia, you will always see a stream of surfers at Lawrencetown Beach or Martinique Beach.

You saw Theodore Tugboat in person

Morgan Leet and her two older siblings.

Morgan Leet and her two older siblings.

Morgan Leet | Narcity

​My sweater in this photo shows how much I loved it Tug Theodore. It was a super popular TV show for all kids in Canada, but I got to see it in real life.

For a long time she was docked in Halifax, so children from all over the Maritimes could visit her.

You cried when Rainbow Valley closed

Morgan Leet as a child, crying.

Morgan Leet as a child, crying.

Morgan Leet | Narcity

In 2005, a tragedy struck the hearts of all children in Atlantic Canada.

No matter which Maritime province you were in, chances are that growing up you made the trip to Prince Edward Island to visit this iconic amusement park. There were rides, attractions and slides. It was every kid’s summer dream to go there, and it gave us memories for life.

When I was seven years old, I had to face the cold hard reality – that Rainbow Valley was officially closed.

you sailed

Morgan Leet as a child sailing with his father, grandfather and brother.

Morgan Leet as a child sailing with his father, grandfather and brother.

Morgan Leet | Narcity

I was very lucky that my parents often enrolled me in the sailing school during the summer. Even though I was never really good, it was super fun.

As you can see from the picture of me, my brother, my dad and my grandpa, we loved being on the ocean.

Especially in Nova Scotia, sailing is a huge thing. Most Maritimers have been on a boat at least once.

You had a swing in the garden

Morgan Leet with her two older siblings on a swing.

Morgan Leet with her two older siblings on a swing.

Morgan Leet | Narcity

In major Canadian cities, you often don’t have a lot of rear space. Growing up on the East Coast, we had more room to play and hang swings.

Ours was shaped like a horse, but many people had a trusty old tire on a string – and it could entertain for hours.

You cut down your Christmas tree

Morgan Leet cutting a Christmas tree in Nova Scotia with her siblings.

Morgan Leet cutting a Christmas tree in Nova Scotia with her siblings.

Morgan Leet | Narcity

Another benefit of not being in a big city like Toronto or Montreal was being able to take a short drive to the woods. This meant that every year we had to cut down our own Christmas tree!

I will never forget walking in the forest, looking for the perfect Charlie Brown tree.

You could run with friends

Morgan Leet played outside as a child.

Morgan Leet played outside as a child.

Morgan Leet | Narcity

It’s not like I walked around downtown Halifax alone at night, but in many places I lived on the east coast I could safely walk alone with my siblings or friends.

Everyone basically knows each other in Atlantic Canada, so kids run around their neighborhood a lot more.

Got fresh lobster on the side of the road

Morgan Leet with her dog and siblings on an East Coast beach.

Morgan Leet with her dog and siblings on an East Coast beach.

Morgan Leet | Narcity

There are many benefits to living by the ocean, such as beaches, swimming, and surfing.

Perhaps the best part is the fresh seafood.

In summer, you will almost always spot someone selling lobster on the side of the road. This might sound super weird to someone from Ontario — but to us, it’s just a tasty dinner opportunity.

You scaled that anchor

Morgan Leet and his brother scale an anchor in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Morgan Leet and his brother scale an anchor in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Morgan Leet | Narcity

This anchor, called the Bonaventure Anchor, is in Point Pleasant Park in Halifax.

It’s a popular place to stroll around town, and the anchor is every kid’s climbing dream.

Chances are if you’re an East Coast kid, you’ve been on top.

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