Kempt Shore Hosts First Annual Pickers & Songwriters Campout

Kempt Shore Hosts First Annual Pickers & Songwriters Campout

August 23, 24, & 25
Kempt Shore Ocean View Campground
5701 Hwy 215, Kempt Shore

The first annual Pickers & Songwriters Campout is happening at Kempt Shore Ocean View Campground August 23, 24 & 25.

The event will feature songwriting workshops led by celebrated Nova Scotian singer and songwriter Terra Spencer as well as Alex Madsen, lead singer and songwriter of the Divorcees. Dave Guptill, expert in guitar picking styles and performance, will lead the guitar workshops. The family-friendly weekend will also feature a painting workshop led by Gwen Smith.

Marc Peterson, who owns the campground along with his partner Patti Gass, says the idea for the event started with visitors asking them about hosting an event of this sort.

“There’s a lot of aspiring singers and songwriters in the Maritimes,” says Peterson.

They didn’t have to look too far afield though when it came to figuring out who could conduct the songwriting workshops they had planned — Terra Spencer also happens to be Gass’s niece.

The Campout weekend schedule is packed with workshops, open mic opportunities, a Friday night dance party featuring Dave Guptill, a Saturday night dance led by The Divorcees, and a Sunday showcase for those interested in participating. Visitors are welcome to sign up for the workshops, attend the dances, or better yet — book a campsite and take part in the whole weekend.

Peterson says campers won’t be disappointed by the experience. The campground itself is located on a twenty acre site along the Kempt Shore in Hants County. With 800 feet of sand beach frontage along the Minas Basin at the mouth of the Avon River, the site offers water & electric sites as well as un-serviced sites. There are all the amenities — flush toilets, free hot showers, and even a health clinic across the street.

A quarry lake is less than two minutes away and striped bass surf fishing can be done from the beach. The stunning sunsets alone, says Peterson, are worth the trip.

For more information about taking part in the Pickers & Songwriters Campout, visit, or call 902 633 2229. The Campout Weekend is regular camping price plus $25/person, weekend passes for non-campers are $25/person, children under 16 with their parents are free, and the workshop registration is $20/person.