Let’s have a picnic! Graves Island Provincial Park- Chester, NS

It’s a tradition. Every July we have a family barbecue/picnic at Graves Island Provincial Park in Chester, to celebrate a couple July birthdays (mine and my youngest daughters) I think it may have started as a way for me to host a birthday party, without actually having to clean up the house….but it has turned into a much-anticipated yearly event.

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Graves Island Provincial Park is located about 30 minutes from Halifax, in East Chester and is a small island joined  by a causeway to the mainland. It is a Provincial Park complete with campground, but it also has a wonderful, scenic picnic park, which is what we use each summer. If you are traveling from the city on a day trip, you could stop here for a nice picnic lunch before heading on towards Ross Farm in nearby New Ross, or a visit to the Town of Lunenburg, or charming Mahone Bay. The possibilities are endless!


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We have been doing this annual event for many years now, so it is a bit of well oiled machine. My parents bring a barbecue and all the gear and the rest of us contribute goodies to the table. We have used many different areas of the picnic park, and they are all good! Each one has a  picnic table….many are covered… and a  beautiful view of the ocean. We always bring balls or Frisbee’s, and there’s usually some swimming and exploring along the water.  It’s really got everything you need for a perfect summer day.

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Traditions are an important part of a family’s life. They provide us with a sense of comfort and belonging….and in this one… cake! 😉 I think it’s the anticipation, the beautiful scenery, the food, the outdoors, and most importantly, the people we are with, that make this such a fun yearly event. Even my teenagers with full-time jobs, both manage to get time off to make sure they can attend. In today’s busy world, I think it’s more important than ever to have family traditions, enjoy experiences, and stay connected. Not easy to make happen, but so important and valuable. I’m so happy that this tradition is part of our families history.

Graves Island 4


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Jennifer and Grace

We live in such a beautiful province, with many areas like this to go have a picnic. If you haven’t checked out Graves Island Provincial Park, make this the summer you do.

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Graves Isalnd Edit pic


  1. We love Graves Island and I mentioned this same idea to some family members this year. I think we need to start the same tradition!

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