6 things to do in Halifax this weekend (Feb. 2-4, 2024) | Cultural Festivals | Halifax, Nova Scotia | THE COAST
Big Funny (left), Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead (centre) and all-you-can-play arcade (right) highlight this weekend's happenings in Halifax.

6 things to do in Halifax this weekend (Feb. 2-4, 2024)

From comedy nights to Hobbits in Halifax, here’s your guide to weekend fun.

February is here, which means two things in Halifax: Snow and rain. Thankfully, our fine Atlantic peninsula has enough going on through the dreary months to tide things over until Shubenacadie Sam—or one of his secret understudies—says spring is on its way.

This weekend is no different, with no less than seven (!!!) noteworthy concerts, comedy nights and theatre shows on offer—and that’s just the silvery coating on Sam’s snowy shadow. Allow us to be your weekend guide with these Coast picks:

1. Take in a night of comedy. Have your pick between stand-up, improv and AI-prompted comedy showdowns this weekend with a packed slate of shows happening around the HRM. No joke. On Friday, Feb. 2, comedians Erik Garf, Jonah Campbell, Luschka Van Aardt and Taylor McMillen turn The Bus Stop Theatre into a live TV sitcom set for The Halifax Chronicles: An Improv Show About Nothing, while over in Bayer’s Lake, alt-comedy troupe Big Funny (local comics Max Kerr, Cher Hann and Collin Flanagan) take the stage for Steele Wheels Motor Museum’s first-ever comedy night. (Tickets go for $10-15 at the Bus Stop, while Steele Wheels’ show will set you back $17.31.)

Kerr describes Friday’s show at Steele Wheels as “really stupid in the best way,” combining sketch comedy with multimedia. There’ll also be a stand-up set from This Hour Has 22 Minutes’ Jordan Foisy.

“We’re trying to do new things every single show,” Kerr says, speaking by phone with The Coast. “It’s completely unserious … [and] the jokes are almost secondary to the fact that it’s [at a car museum]. Hopefully it’ll draw in some strangers to see us for the first time.”

The weekend of comedy doesn’t end there. On Feb. 3, the Bus Stop Theatre hosts Future of Funny II: A stand-up show set in the year 2069, where some of Halifax’s top comedians perform their best sets and compete against ChatGPT-prompted comedy routines performed by the CyBoys—characters creator Nick Martinello describes as “half-human, half-machine joke slingers.”

“Some of [the jokes] are surprisingly coherent, and others are just completely baffling,” the Dartmouth-based comic tells The Coast. “Last time we did it, the comedians who tried to perform it were just breaking down in tears, because some of the stuff was just so insane.”

If that isn’t enough of a lure, Martinello says the show will also feature a special—and highly unexpected—guest. (We’ve been sworn to secrecy, but trust us: It’s worth the suspense.)

2. Treat yourself to a dinner out. Dine Around is back in Halifax for all of February, which means many of your favourite restaurants—from enVie, to Cheeky Neighbour, to The Bicycle Thief, to Indochine Banh Mi—are offering special fixed price menus, ranging from $10 to $60. There’s a lot to enjoy—from “Pig Mac” nachos and beers at Battery Park, to a three-course dinner at Dear Friend, to Filipino sausage, eggs and rice with Bacon Tan Ping at Xena’s Bread & Butter.

click to enlarge 6 things to do in Halifax this weekend (Feb. 2-4, 2024)
The Canteen on Portland / Instagram (@thecanteenns)
The Canteen Burger is on the menu for Dine Around, along with cider-steamed mussels and craft beer, cider and wine.

3. Have a Bonspiel… in the name of love. The CFB Halifax Curling Club is hosting an all-afternoon affair this Saturday, Feb. 3, with a “U2 Fun Spiel” open to beginner curlers. Because nothing says curling like Bono. (Actually, the U2 is for curlers who have less than two years’ experience.) A $40 entrance fee (or $160 for a team) gets you food and snacks, along with beer tastings from Good Robot. If you’re interested, send an email to [email protected].

4. See Lord of the Rings stars at the Neptune Theatre. Actors Dominic Monaghan and Billy Boyd (forever known to LOTR fans as Merry and Pippin) star in the Halifax-based theatre production of Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead. The play—described as an “absurdist, existential tragicomedy”—takes Hamlet’s two minor characters and puts them in a world where they’re destined to die. And soon. The show debuted at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 1966. It’s running at the Neptune Theatre from Feb. 1 until Feb. 25. Select tickets are still available for the opening night show this Friday, Feb. 2. Prices range from $42 to $119.

click to enlarge 6 things to do in Halifax this weekend (Feb. 2-4, 2024)
Neptune Theatre
Dominic Monaghan and Billy Boyd star as Rosencrantz and Guildenstern in the Neptune Theatre's production of Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead.

5. Enjoy a night of live music. Take your pick of concerts this weekend—there’s no lack of options. That includes the Rankin’s Winter Warmers series, ongoing at the Marquee Ballroom (2037 Gottingen Street) every Saturday afternoon until Mar. 16. The concert series—led by Music Nova Scotia Entertainer of the Year Rankin MacInnis and his band, The Broken Reeds—features a rotating cast of guest performers every weekend. This Saturday, Feb. 3, it’s a packed list: Siobhan Martin, Shane Martin, Tori Cameron, James Shaw, Luke Levy, Seamus Erskine, Luke Arsenault, Calen Kinney and Jordan Bruleigh are all set to perform. (And instead of the Marquee this time, it’ll be the Seahorse Tavern.) Advance tickets are sold out, but MacInnis says “there may be a few pop up at the door.” Doors open at 2pm. Tickets cost $16.58.

Elsewhere in the city, the Halifax Harmonizers Men’s Choir has a free acapella performance at the Central Library (5440 Spring Garden Road). The show runs 2-3pm on Saturday and includes a mix of “show tunes, gospel, classic and contemporary pop.”

The big concert of the weekend, though, is happening at the Light House Arts Centre on Saturday evening. Polaris Music Prize-nominated folk rock duo Whitehorse (married couple Melissa McLelland and Luke Doucet) is performing in Halifax, with an opening set from Toronto singer-songwriter Julian Taylor. Advance tickets are on sale for $44.45. Doors open at 7pm on Feb. 3.

6. Get your Pinball Wizard on. The Propeller Arcade turned five years old this week, and to celebrate—or heck, maybe just because—the popular Gottingen Street haunt is hosting a “Free Play Night” in the basement on Sunday, Feb. 4. For a $10 cover, you can play all the pinball, skeeball, Terminator and NBA Jam that you want from 4pm until midnight. To top it off, all the arcade’s taps are $5 from 7pm until 11pm.

About The Author

Martin Bauman

Martin Bauman, The Coast's News & Business Reporter, is an award-winning journalist and interviewer, whose work has appeared in the Globe and Mail, Calgary Herald, Capital Daily, and Waterloo Region Record, among other places. In 2020, he was named one of five “emergent” nonfiction writers by the RBC Taylor Prize...
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