The Bay Roberts Visitor Information Centre provides tourist information about Bay Roberts, the Baccalieu Trail, as well as provincial guides and maps. Lois Dawe, Tourism Officer, will be happy to assist with traveling information and directions. [In some areas of the province, this type of facility is called a "Tourist Chalet." ]
The centre offers a number of conveniences for the traveller. A picnic area overlooks the region and a deck with a telescope overlooks Conception Bay. Two large story boards are located on the deck. One provides details about Bay Roberts and the other recounts the life of Ted Russell. The facility has wheelchair accessible, public washrooms with a baby change area. It offers a WiFi Internet connection.
In addition, the centre is a focus for cultural activities. Sandra Roach, general manager of the Bay Roberts Cultural Foundation, has an office in the building. The main exhibition room of the centre is named the Holdin' Ground Room.
The inspiration for the designation is Ted Russell's play "The Holdin' Ground," which elaborates on the bond that the people of Newfoundland and Labrador feel with their home. The strength of the bond defines who we are as a people and draws us back when we leave, as many of us have over the centuries.
A number of artifacts have been donated to the centre by the family of Ted Russell, the well-known Newfoundland writer and storyteller. Along with the large Pigeon inlet Quilt, the artifacts pay tribute to Ted Russell, who was born in Coley's Point, and whose works capture the spirit of outport Newfoundland and Labrador at around the time of Confederation with Canada in 1949.
The exhibits in the centre recognize the diversity of people, places and things, expressed through works of art, literature, music. language, stories , and inspirations that contribute to Newfoundland and Labrador's strength as a "Holdin' Ground."
Three books about the history and culture of the local area have been launched at the centre by Flanker Press: Historic Bay Roberts by Mike Flynn, Riots and Religion by David Dawe, and Our Life on Lear's Room, Labrador by Greta Hussey from Port de Grave. Ninety-five-year-old Gus Menchions hosted a display of a selection of the 95 model boats he has made. The Pigeon Inlet Quilters have given demonstrations of their quilting techniques and O'Neill's Gardenland gives seasonal presentations on garden care. Children from area schools, motorcycle clubs, seniors groups, and children's groups participate in informational sessions at the centre. During special seasons, such as Halloween and Christmas, the centre is decorated and special events are arranged.
Seasons Open: Open daily during the summer season, five days per week during the fall, and selected hours at other times during the year.
Hours Open: Hours depend on the season and the activiies. Check the Bay Roberts website for information.
The centre is wheelchair accessible, including washrooms, and provides special facilities for caring for infants.
Well-behaved pets are permitted for short visits if on a leash.