Thanksgiving is in the rear-view, which means one thing in Halifax: Not only is Nocturne here for another year, but another full weekend slate of events is on offer—with happenings ranging from buzz-worthy comedy shows to sold-out concerts at the Light House Arts Centre. Want to know how to spend your weekend? Allow us to be your guide with these Coast picks:
1 Explore Nocturne all weekend long. How do you explain Nocturne to a non-Haligonian? The annual all-night art festival—a Halifax tradition since 2008—is as much a part of life in the city as weekends at the Halifax Brewery Market, the noon cannon and ferry terminals that can’t accept credit cards. (Maybe one day.)
On Thursday, Oct. 12, Nocturne Halifax (also referred to as Nocturne: Art at Night) returns for another year of weird and wonderful art exhibitions spread across the HRM. Want to know what the deepest part of the ocean sounds like? They’ve got you covered. Ever wondered about the stories behind the murals on Quinpool Road? Again, you’re in luck. The festival runs from Thursday to Sunday, Oct. 15, with the majority of the events planned for the evening of Saturday, Oct. 14. Read The Coast’s guide to Nocturne 2023 here.
2 Take in the Halloween Town Market. Looking for something kid-friendly to do? The Halifax Brewery Farmers’ Market will transform into a Halloween-themed market on the afternoon of Saturday, Oct. 14, with face painting, trick-or-treating at every vendor table, door prizes and even a haunted house. Admission is free. The market runs from 4-8pm.
3 See the Halifax Wanderers’ first home playoff game in franchise history. The atmosphere promises to be electric at the Wanderers Grounds on Saturday, as HFX Wanderers FC hosts its first-ever playoff game in the pro soccer club’s five years. This year’s Wanderers are built to win: With winger Massimo Ferrin entering Team of the Year contention, midfielder Lorenzo Callegari remaining one of the best game-changers in the Canadian Premier League and defender Dan Nimick on a one-way ride to getting scooped by a Major League Soccer club or head somewhere in the English Football League pyramid, Halifax stands a real chance of making a deep playoff run.
If you don’t already have a ticket to Saturday’s game—the Wanderers host Langford, BC side Pacific FC at 3pm on Oct. 14—you’ll have to try your luck on the resale market. Tickets sold out before the Wanderers even knew their playoff opponent.
4 Hear Donovan Woods and the Doobie Brothers live in concert. No, not together—you’ll have to choose one. But on Friday, Oct. 13, both the San Jose rockers and the Sarnia-born singer-songwriter are performing in town, and tickets are a hot commodity. Woods’ latest album, 2021’s Without People, was nominated for Alternative Country Album of the Year at the Canadian Country Music Awards. He’s in the midst of a North American tour that will see the Sarnia, Ont.-raised artist swing through New Brunswick, New York, Chicago and San Francisco from October to May 2024. Tickets are sold out to his show at the Light House Arts Centre.
The Doobies, meanwhile, are in the midst of a somewhat-belated 50th anniversary tour—the group’s self-titled debut album came out in 1971—and were nominated for induction into the Songwriters Hall of Fame earlier this year. Tickets are still available for their Scotiabank Centre show, starting at $85.
5 Enjoy a night of live comedy. If you’re in the mood for stand-up this weekend, you’re in luck: Both Friday and Saturday nights offer your choice of acts, including Scottish comedian Danny Bhoy and rising Indo-Canadian star Ashwyn Singh. Danny Bhoy (otherwise known as Danni Chaudhry) performs back-to-back nights at the Dalhousie Arts Centre on Oct. 13 and 14—tickets are still available, but limited in supply—while Singh performs at Pickford & Black on Oct. 14. The New Delhi-raised, Toronto-based Singh’s comedy routines, which cover the absurdities of the Canadian permanent residency process, the IRS and Indian pickup lines, have amassed nearly 134,000 followers between Instagram and TikTok.