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The town of Bay Roberts is located on the north shore of Conception Bay on the Bay de Verde Peninsula in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. The growth of local economy can be connected to the towns proximity to other major Newfoundland markets, by road and by water.
The town is connected by Veterans' Memorial Highway to Route 1, the Trans-Canada Highway leading to all points in the province. St. John's, the capital city, is only 90 km away. Argentia, the eastern terminal for Marine Atlantic's Gulf Ferry Service is only 70 km away.
Local businesses have easy access to more than half of the provinces population. As a result, the town is a center for major transportation and distribution, providing services for the Avalon Peninsula and surrounding areas.
With 5,237 people, it is one of the larger towns in Newfoundland, and with Carbonear is one of largest on the Baccalieu Trail. The town has a provincially recognized museum called the Road to Yesterday, and walking trails have been developed in Juggler's Cove and French's Cove in Bay Roberts East to celebrate the early history of the town.
Bay Roberts Harbour
Bay Roberts offers year round shipping services through its large port, which is similar in size to the harbour in St. John's and can accommodate the largest of ships. It is protected from ocean storms by Fergus Island at its entrance.
The bay and harbour have clear shorelines, without rocks or headland protrusions. As a result of its size and outstanding features, it has been approved for anchorage by marine insurance companies.
European fishermen were visiting Bay Roberts as early as the 1500s. Fishermen from Brittany and Normandy in what is today France fished the waters off the coast of Bay Roberts in the early 1500s and named the harbour Baie de Robert.
They established onshore fishing rooms where they dried and salted codfish. The French fishermen came to the area because of its large harbour, and flat rock beaches which they used for curing fish.
Most likely they started building fishing rooms near the end of Bay Roberts harbour in Bay Roberts East in such areas as Juggler's Cove. Then they moved to French's Cove and later to Mercer's Cove. Evidence of these European people can be found in community place names such as Priaulx Hill and in nearby names such as Spaniard's Bay and Port de Grave.
The Town of Bay Roberts was incorporated in 1951 after Premier Joseph Smallwood suggested that if the Town had its own council, it could take care of paving its own roads. In the time since its incorporation, Bay Roberts has seen many changes.
The number of services has greatly increased from two main businesses to a town whose economy depends upon its service industry. Bay Roberts has become a main business centre for a large part of Trinity and Conception Bays. Vast improvements have also been made in the area of recreation with the modernization of the swimming pool and the development of the ball fields and tennis courts.
The residents of Bay Roberts enjoy many outdoor activities. There are several hiking trails and swimming areas for all to enjoy. Sporting facilities include: the Bay Arena, three softball fields, tennis courts, an excellent swimming pool, a regulation soccer pitch, and modern gymnasiums in the town schools.
The Cable Building
Constructed by the Western Union Cable Company in 1913, the Cable Station was restored by the Bay Roberts Heritage Society. The brick building was erected as a relay station on the connection from England to North and South America.
During two world wars, it necessitated a company of army personnel to guard the property from possible enemy action.Winston Churchill and Franklin D. Roosevelt had a private line on the link through Bay Roberts station.
It houses the Road to Yesterday Museum, the Christopher Pratt Art Gallery, the Bay Roberts Archives, and the Bay Roberts municipal offices, and the Bay Roberts Council Chambers. In front of the building is a concourse which marks the site of the cable landing.
Wilbur Sparkes Recreation Complex
Wilbur Sparkes Recreation Complex is one of the best in the province. It is the first field on the Avalon Peninsula outside of St. Johns that is fully equipped with lights for night games.
The Bay Arena, which was built through fund raising by community volunteers, is an important part of the community. Children and adults use the Area for hockey and other for organized ice sports in the winter. During the summer, it hosts everything from concerts to craft fairs to dances.
There are five play grounds in Bay Roberts, including the Community Gardens. The town Swimming Pool, is used for swimming instruction, recreation, and competition. The Sea Lions Swim Team have won eleven consecutive titles at the Provincial Short Course Summer Club Championships sponsored by Swim Newfoundland and Labrador.
Walk and Tracking
Bay Roberts East Shoreline Heritage Walk is located in the historic east end of the town and extends from Crane's Brook Wharf to Mad Rocks and back - a distance of 7 km.
Catherines Dance Studio opened it doors in Bay Roberts in 2002, and since then has been proudly providing Conception Bay North with qualified dance instruction in a professional dance studio environment.
Catherines Dance Studio is locally owned and operated by Catherine McRae, a fully qualified and professionally certified Dance Teacher.
The studio is dedicated to providing its students with the highest standard of dance training and offers a variety of programs for ages 3 to adult!
Classes are available in Tiny Toes (ages 3-5yrs), Ballet, Tap, Jazz, Street Jazz/Hip Hop, Modern Theatre, Ballroom & Latin American. This summer, Catherine will be attending the International Dance Teachers Workshop in New York City at the Alvin Aliey School of Ballet & the Broadway Dance Center.