SOURIS — The road to Souris is lined with seafood and seaglass, all part of the new welcome mat that greets those arriving to P.E.I.’s most easterly town.
The new Souris Beach Gateway Park was recently officially opened here after more than a year of construction and development and a cost of roughly $750,000.
The facility boasts a long boardwalk and an array of shops and eateries at the entrance to the town overlooking Colville Bay and the ferry terminal.
The park features everything from a seaglass operation and ice cream shop, to Johnny Flynn’s world famous oysters and flavours by chef Michael Smith. It is built next to the gulf and required the construction of a major seawall to protect the site.
“It’s a great welcoming place for all who come to our town,’’ said Mayor David MacDonald during the ceremony. “And we hope to continue the work along our beach and seawall.”
The facility actually opened earlier in the summer and business has been brisk.
Patricia Ettinger of the Seaglass Shanty said she was delighted with the number of customers visiting her operation and praised local residents for supporting the new venture.
“This is a wonderful place and one of the best places in the world to find seaglass,’’ she said.
Fisheries, Aquaculture and Rural Development Minister Ron MacKinley congratulated the enterprise and referred to Smith as being well known for his “wine and cook books.”
Smith, who operates Chef Michael’s Flavour Shack, didn’t let that comment slip by and quipped he was delighted the minister was going to grant him a liquor licence.
The Lobster Shack, operated by Johnny Flynn, serves up a smorgasbord of seafood where guests can sit overlooking the ocean.
The town chipped in with $100,000 along with major funding of $350,000 from ACOA and almost the same from the province through rural development and Skills P.E.I.
Mayor David MacDonald, right, welcomes guests to the official opening of the new Souris Beach Gateway Park.
©Guardian photo by Steve Sharratt