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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

20 things to do in the north end

Home decor, vintage clothing, community grocers and endless supplies of coffee—this side of town is bursting with new and veteran businesses

Posted By on Tue, Oct 14, 2014 at 6:16 PM

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1. Time travel at Honeybee Vintage Bridal
Walk through the gate into Glubes Lofts’ (2130 Gottingen Street) laneway and Honeybee Vintage Bridal and you’ll be transported back a few decades. Melanie Peters’ boutique is bursting with throwback wedding attire for the betrothed, yes, but there’s also a vibrant selection of pre-’80s party-wear and gorgeous accessories (hats, brooches, gloves) that’ll appeal to the fashionable, but less-committed among us. Whether you’re aiming to be the belle of your next social gathering, or take Halloween to the next level, pop in to see what the buzz is about.

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2.Get your groceries on Gottingen Street
Two years ago The Carrot was just a twinkle in Norman Greenberg’s eye—in all of our eyes, really—as we imagined what Gottingen Street would look like with a fully functioning community grocery store on it. Last weekend, that twinkle became a reality: after years of planning, grant-winning, location scouting and hard work, the co-op opened its doors at 2063 Gottingen Street to hundreds of keen shoppers. Drop in to say congrats, grab some milk or become a lifetime member.

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3. Look at art. Contemplate art. Buy art.
Find any opportunity you can to drop by Parentheses Gallery (2168 Gottingen Street) to see what’s hanging on its walls. This month you’re going to want to check out the vibrant ways of contemporary artist James Kirkpatrick—his The Way Things Are Now hangs until October 19.

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4. Let the Indie Mercantile wash over you
This shop is full things to make you and your home look, smell and feel really great. As part of its selection of local products, the Independent Mercantile Company (2091 Gottingen Street) has its own line of soaps (courtesy of Bad Mouth Soaps), based on some of the cities that have inspired it the most. The pictured Carolina provides southern comfort via the scents of bourbon, tobacco and mint—a surprisingly sweet combo.

5. Escape at Ace Burger
Exercise your belly and your brain. Pound back an Ace Burger (2605 Agricola Street) before experiencing the mystery that is The Great Escape (5693 North Street, thegreatescape-hfx.com), a live adventure game. Here you’re plunked into the middle of an unfolding story (and into a locked room) where you and your friends have 60 minutes to solve riddles, crack codes and do whatever else it takes to get your out.

6. Colour inside the lines
An annual Adult Colouring Contest makes sense at One Block Barbershop (2010 Gottingen Street), where haircuts are nothing short of inspired. Until October 31 at midnight, you can enter to win free haircuts for a year just by breaking out the Crayolas. Your page will be judged on technical skill, creativity and overall appearance, so choose your colours wisely.

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7. Inspire your own Extreme Makeover: Home Edition
Renovators Resource (2457 Maynard Street) has been collecting pre-1950s architectural salvage for 20 years, way before Pinterest was a thing. Carrying everything from “doorknobs to bathtubs”—and all the rustic window frames, mantles, doors and spindles in between—this is a great spot to inspire both home decor and big time renovations. “We notice people are getting a bit more into shabby chic, but it’s not enough to just look shabby chic—it’s got to be old,” says Alison Philbley. Some recent Renovators Resource rescues include doors from the Roy Building tear-down, and gym floor from the South Park YMCA, but like most gems you’ll find in this place, those won’t be around for long.

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8. Get lost at Lost & Found
It’s always fun to scour the racks at Lost & Found (2383 Agricola Street), but this weekend is an extra special one to stop by the vintage clothing shop/art gallery/all-ages venue. From Friday, October 10-Tuesday, October 14 Alexandra Esperanza’s fashion and textile creations and Erin St. John’s handmade jewellery will be popping up on Agricola, celebrate the NSCAD artists at the opening reception, Friday from 6-8pm, whilst sipping on wine.

9. Get some comic relief
Last month Quantum Frontier got an upgrade and moved into a massive new space at 3132 Robie Street, which is loaded with games, graphic novels, cards and comics, but also boasts game room for its nightly events as well as a spot for its soon-to-be sister cafe. Don’t take my word for it, go see for yourself!

10. Work on your winter reserve
Sooner than we like to admit we’ll be bitching about sidewalk plows and windchill, but if you plan ahead those days won’t be so dark. Bust out that carboy that’s been collecting dust in your basement, take a trip to the Maritime Wine & Beer Emporium (6015 Lady Hammond Road) and get going on a batch of homebrew.

11. Follow (and follow in the footsteps of) the wunderkinder over at @ScotiaPharmacy (2151 Gottingen Street)
The community pharmacy and social media star has kindly shared some of its favourite neighbours, which all warrant all-caps level excitement.

1. THE NOOK (2116 Gottingen Street) GET CAFFEINATED, PLAY BOARDGAMES & SIT IN A LITERAL “NOOK” WITH CUSHIONS!!

2. BLACK BUFFALO RECORDS/OCTOPI COMPUTERS (5576 Cornwallis Street) FIND SOME NEW TUNES & GET UR COMPUTER TUNED UP AT THE SAME TIME

3. PLAN B (2180 Gottingen Street) FIND HIDDEN TREASURES, COOL COLLECTIBLES, UNIQUE ART & FREAKY TAXIDERMY! PLUS, THE DONAIR PILLOW!

4. DEE DEE’S ICE CREAM (5668 Cornwallis Street) DEPENDING ON THE WEATHER TREAT URSELF TO AN ICE CREAM SANDWICH OR A GRILLED CHEESE SANDWICH

5. THE MACDONALD BUILDING CAFETERIA (2131 Gottingen Street) GOOD CHEAP FOOD!!! $5.80 FOR A MEAL DEAL?!? TONS OF DELICIOUS OPTIONS ALL WEEK ((BUT FRIDAY IS CHICKEN FINGER DAY)) “WOULD YOU LIKE A ROLL WITH THAT”?! YES PLZ!!

6. PROPELLER BREWING COMPANY (2015 Gottingen Street) BEST BEER EVER & AN EVEN GREATER PLACE TO HOST A STAFF PARTY!! 

7. ALTEREGOS CAFE (2193 Gottingen Street) A COZY MEETING PLACE & HOME OF THE ALTER-EGGO BREAKFAST SANDWICH. GOOD PLACE TO GRAB A COFFEE OR SAMOSA.

12. Find an interior motive
Whether reimagining your bathroom, or just sprucing things up with some new decor, Kevin Muise can advise your every move. He’s recently re-opened his store, Kevin Muise Interiors, at 2086 Creighton Street, a bright and brand new space that you might just want to move into.

13. Make an epic charcuterie board
Rabbit rillette? Check. Jambon Pays? Check. Duck prosciutto? Check. Saucisson sec? Check. Cheese, cheese and more cheese? Ratinaud French Cuisine (2082 Gottingen Street) has you and your salt intake covered there, too.

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14. Eat breakfast
If your Smith’s Bakery (2525 Agricola Street) breakfast sandwich left you craving breakfast for lunch, too, check out the freshly hatched Robie Street Station. The mega bright diner opened at 2394 Robie Street last week—soon after the arrival of its next-door take-away cafe Robie Street Express—offering burgers, sandwiches and creative takes on your standard eggs, French toast and pancakes all day long.

15. Amp up your living room
After nearly 30 years it’s no wonder Peak Audio (2813 Agricola Street) is the best in the business of great sound, but while its passionate about honouring tradtition, Peak is also growing to offer furniture and accessories and welcoming the newest in audio and entertainment with open arms. This fall, Mike Merrigan says you can expect some storefront renos, just in time for the big anniversary. “This will reflect our transition to new technologies such as wirelessly accessing and reproducing music from your handled devices.”

16. Hurry hard to the Mayflower Curling Club
Your friend The Food Wolf has found itself an indoor home for crisp months it usually spends off-road. We’re happy to inform you that The Mayflower Curling Club (3000 Monaghan Drive, just off Young Street) is officially your new hangout whether you’re an avid curler or not. Until march the Food Wolf crew will be serving up some of the favourites you’d normally find on the truck’s menu, as well as some diner classics and on Sundays, brunch. Did we mention there’s also a bar?

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17. Wine and dine yourself
Indecisive diners be warned—there’s lots to choose from in this ’hood. A week in a eating out dream world might look like this: Monday, Hali Deli (2389 Agricola Street); Tuesday, EDNA (2053 Gottingen Street); Wednesday, enVie (5775 Charles Street); Thursday, Lion & Bright (2534 Agricola Street); Friday, Agricola Street Brasserie (2540 Agricola Street); Saturday, Field Guide (2076 Gottingen Street) and Sunday...well the chances of getting out of bed and putting on real pants won’t be an option.

18 Experience north by nightlife
Make it your business to check out live, local talent at Gus’ Pub (2605 Agricola Street), Menz Bar (2182 Gottingen Street), Marquee Ballroom (2037 Gottingen Street) —which will be joined by a basement-dwelling Seahorse Tavern soon—The Company House (2202 Gottingen Street) or The Bus Stop Theatre (2203 Gottingen Street). Check out our live music listings here to plan accordingly.

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19. Get crafty
Patch Halifax (2571 Robie Street)—a fabric store and sewing room—is one of the neighbourhood’s most exciting new additions. Challenge yourself to one of its awesome lineup of workshops. This weekend, for example, you can stitch your own party decorations at the Flag Bunting banner-making class (Saturday, October 11 from 1-4pm, $45), but there are regular beginner offerings in quilt-, pouch-, pillow- and cowl-making, too.

20. Make your walls happier
Studio 14 Gifts & Gallery (2393 Agricola Street) isn’t just a source for prints and paintings—including classic Alex Colville’s and owner Jennifer Jacobson’s own creations—it’s also a spot to get your favourite pieces framed affordably. Jacobson prides herself on letting the art speak for itself—she’s happy to help you find the right way to make yours shine.

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