BEST PLACE TO DANCE

The Sea­horse Tav­ern

The Coast - - CITY LIVING -

PUB­LIC LIFE

BEST AC­TIVIST GOLD El Jones SIL­VER Carly Suther­land BRONZE Rana Za­man There re­ally are no losers in the Best Ac­tivist cat­e­gory. A sin­gle in­di­vid­ual call­ing for change; a sin­gle act of re­sis­tance means just as much, can have just as much im­pact, is just as brave as all those fight­ing the good fight. Which is not to un­der­cut the sheer vol­ume of in­spi­ra­tional labour El Jones con­tin­ues to do for this city. The Nancy’s Chair in Women’s Study at Mount Saint Vin­cent Univer­sity has spent an­other year speak­ing out against racism in the Mar­itimes and fight­ing against in­jus­tices like Canada’s fail­ure of Ab­doul Abdi and the prison con­di­tions in­side Cen­tral Nova. Jones takes home her fourth straight win as Best Ac­tivist in Hal­i­fax but she shares it with a city full of strong hearts. Win­ners, all. BEST AC­TIVIST OR­GA­NI­ZA­TION GOLD Youth Project SIL­VER Autism Nova Sco­tia BRONZE YWCA Hal­i­fax Well, this is awk­ward. In the days lead­ing up to this is­sue, news broke that Kate She­wan, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of the Youth Project, has been sus­pended pend­ing an ex­ter­nal in­ves­ti­ga­tion into “work­place en­vi­ron­ment and of­fice cul­ture.” A pub­lic state­ment on the LGBTQ+ non profit’s web­site says all work­shops and in­ter­nal pro­gram­ming are also can­celled for the next two months. Mean­while, an “ex­tra­or­di­nary gen­eral meet­ing” will be held No­vem­ber 24 at the Glit­ter Bean Cafe. What­ever’s hap­pen­ing, we’re sure all the Youth Project’s sup­port­ers want to see the or­ga­ni­za­tion tackle this sit­u­a­tion with open­ness and ac­count­abil­ity—so the city’s Best Ac­tivist Or­ga­ni­za­tion can re­sume of­fer­ing its much-needed pro­grams and sup­ports.

BEST ATH­LETE GOLD El­lie Black SIL­VER Jill Saulnier BRONZE Court­ney Baker Canada’s great­est gym­nast vaults to an­other first-place fin­ish atop a podium of all-fe­male can­di­dates in this year’s com­pe­ti­tion for Best Ath­lete. Black’s ac­com­plish­ments are too many to name, but none­the­less worth not­ing. This year, she was hon­oured as the youngest in­clu­sion in the pro­vin­cial Sport Hall of Fame’s Top 15 Ath­letes in Nova Sco­tian His­tory. Black came in ranked num­ber 12 of all time, even at the young age of 22, and as one of only three hon­ourees still ac­tively com­pet­ing. The two-time Olympian isn’t show­ing any signs of slow­ing down either, hav­ing re­cently won gold at the World Chal­lenge Cup. She’s joined by Olympian and team Canada hockey star, Saulnier and Dal­housie vol­ley­ball stand­out and na­tional team player, Baker. BEST BLOG­GER

GOLD Arthur Gau­dreau,

Hal­i­fax ReTales SIL­VER Kate Ross, Hal­i­fax Noise BRONZE Kayla Short, Short Presents It’s a golden year for Arthur Gau­dreau—the brains be­hind the ubiq­ui­tous Hal­i­fax ReTales brand— and not just be­cause he’s picked up a re­peat win as Best Blog­ger. Ear­lier this fall, ReTales also made the tran­si­tion to print me­dia. Gau­dreau has part­nered with the

Chron­i­cle Her­ald for a news­pa­per ver­sion of his pop­u­lar weekly web up­dates on Hal­i­fax’s open­ings, clos­ings and other sundry busi­ness items. The man him­self also got mar­ried this year. All told, not too shabby of a 2018.

BEST COM­MU­NITY PROJECT GOLD Hope Blooms SIL­VER Feed Nova Sco­tia BRONZE Com­mon Roots Ur­ban Farm There’s a riot of gig­gling noises as Jessie Jol­ly­more an­swers the phone, strug­gling to be heard over the din. The ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor at Hope Blooms is in the midst of a prod­uct launch plan­ning meet­ing with some of the or­ga­ni­za­tion’s younger en­trepreneurs, a group of girls un­der 12. “The older youth do the dress­ing and their younger sib­lings and some younger kids wanted to know about mak­ing some­thing from noth­ing and about putting some good into the world.” To start, the all-girls group is launch­ing a hibis­cus tea with notes of blue­berry that fea­tures fair-trade leaves har­vested by sin­gle moth­ers in Sene­gal. While the brew hits shelves mid-No­vem­ber, Hope Blooms is keep­ing busy with other ini­tia­tives like a book launch on No­vem­ber 20 and a men­tor­ing sys­tem that’ll help other youth groups build their own com­mu­nity gar­dens and small busi­nesses. “We want to turn the prod­uct into do­ing good,” Jol­ly­more adds.

BEST COUN­CIL­LOR GOLD Lin­dell Smith SIL­VER Waye Ma­son BRONZE Sam Austin The coun­cil­lor dis­putes these rank­ings, for the record. Smith as­sumed the win­ners would go Sam Austin in first place, Waye Ma­son for sil­ver and then, maybe, him­self. Don’t get him wrong. He’s “100 per­cent grate­ful and thank­ful” to all the peo­ple who voted for him and “ev­ery­one who’s been pa­tient with me as a coun­cil­lor in learn­ing the ropes” over the past two years. But Smith says he’s tried to keep a semi-low pro­file over the past 12 months as he gets ready for the sec­ond ex­plo­sive half of his first term. Hope­fully come the next re-elec­tion, he adds, if his res­i­dents want to see him come back he can let loose and have a lit­tle more fun with the of­ten Sisyphean slog of mu­nic­i­pal gov­er­nance.

BEST DRAG PER­FORMER GOLD Elle Noir SIL­VER Brid­get Von Snaps BRONZE Far­rah Moan When, af­ter days of try­ing to con­nect for an in­ter­view, Chris Cochrane’s in­tense sched­ule fi­nally al­lows a phone call, the makeup artist, ac­tor and drag per­former is un­der­stand­ably ex­hausted. Fresh off the set from Stage Mother— a Thom Fitzger­ald-directed flick drop­ping next year that has Cochrane on deck as makeup artist, ac­tor, and trans and drag con­sul­tant— Cochrane is full of thoughts about why she snagged gold. “What sets me apart is that I’m very di­verse. All the new queens wanna be Bey­once and Brit­ney but you gotta know the older girls like Tina and Cher,” she says, adding she makes all of her own cos­tumes and is the

RI­LEY SMITH

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