Oyster treat for arriving ECMA delegates

Emma Childs
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P.E.I. Aquaculture Alliance on hand with food treats as East Coast Music Association gears up for the big show

Guitar-shaped cargo scattered amongst suitcases on the conveyer belt at the airport could mean only one thing at a time like this: a plane full of ECMA musicians has touched down in Charlottetown.

On Wednesday morning, the Charlottetown Airport paired up with the P.E.I. Aquaculture Alliance to welcome a planeload of ECMW delegates to the Island with a traditional seafood lunch.

A bed of ice was laid out with fresh oysters on top and dozens of cups filled with muscle chowder on the side. Not a person on the plane was aware of the culinary event unfolding down below.

"It’s going to be a surprise and it’s going to be a delight," said Ann Worth, executive director of the P.E.I. Aquaculture Alliance.

"We are just so thrilled to be able to (see) them coming off the tarmac, through the front doors and just essentially starting (the) Island kitchen party as soon as they walk through."

As friends and family awaited the flight, P.E.I. fiddler Courtney Hogan entertained the crowd with a range of upbeat tunes.

"This whole week is going to amazing," she said.

Hogan played in ECMW when it was last held in Charlottetown in 2011, but plans to sit this one out and take in the other performances.

"There (are) amazing acts," she said, “performers from P.E.I. and all across Canada."

The atmosphere picked up the moment passengers trickled into the airport, their expressions of confusion quickly evolving into delight as they reunited with friends and family. Some passengers even pretended to do a short jig as they were met by Hogan’s music.

Halifax rapper Sean Jordan landed on the Island for his first time in three years.

"It’s good to be back," he said.

Jordan goes by the name Wordburglar onstage.

"I make rapping songs about sandwiches and food and good stuff," he explained.

Jordan is gearing up for two performances in the ECMW after having played a few gigs in Toronto.

“I’m looking forward to taking in some good music, probably having a beer or two and just relaxing (and) talking to other musicians," he said.

As the passengers waited by the conveyer belt for their baggage, servers walked around with trays of chowder and oysters for everyone to try.

"We live in this wonderful place and we want people to get a sense as to why we love (it)," explained Worth. "Showcasing our world-class mussels and oysters... it gives people a flavour for one of the things that makes this place so special."

Organizations: P.E.I. Aquaculture Alliance, East Coast Music Music Associtiaon, Charlottetown Airport

Geographic location: Charlottetown, Canada, Toronto

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