Roundup: 66.4% of N.S. fully vaccinated, arson charges for New Glasgow man, Lunenburg transit push continues, food bank need stays strong

Photo: Jesse MacLean

Nova Scotia has 17 active cases of COVID-19, with one new case (in the Central Zone) and no recoveries reported in the latest government update. One person is hospitalized in ICU with the disease.

As of Aug. 10, 75.9% of Nova Scotians have had their first dose of vaccine, and 66.4% have had both jabs. Canadawide, 71.5% of people have had one shot, and 61.9% are fully inoculated.

So far, COVID has killed 26,683 people across Canada, including 93 in Nova Scotia.

Arson charge after Pictou County fire
A 35-year-old man from New Glasgow faces a number of charges after someone set fire to a Hillside home, with three people inside, on Aug. 8.

At about 3:05 a.m., Pictou District RCMP received a call about a house fire. The occupants told police they smelled gas just before noticing the fire, and fled as the house burned.

Police had been called to the same home on July 28, when a man uttered threats to burn it down, but escaped before they arrived.

Scott Mitchell Anderson is scheduled to appear in court tomorrow to answer charges of arson and uttering threats.

The Pictou Advocate has details.

Calls for smarter transit spending
Transit advocates are calling for governments to be smarter and more strategic about how they fund projects.

Stewart Franck, from the lobby group Citizens for Public Transit, has been pushing for a Lunenburg County-wide transit system, and recently made a presentation to civic politicians in Mahone Bay.

“I can’t understand how there is a little bit of chunks of money invested in all these little community transit systems without the province or federal government or the municipalities combined having a larger vision,” he says. “If they could take all these pockets of money and put them together, we would find that we probably have enough funding out there, at least provincially, to go to the federal government and say, ‘Help us out here, let’s get a provincewide or, at least, regional systems going.'”

Keith Corcoran has more for LighthouseNow.

Photo: Jesse MacLean

Shakespeare by the Sea returns
After the pandemic forced it into dormancy last summer, Shakespeare by the Sea has returned to Point Pleasant Park, presenting A Midsummer Night’s Dream (and hosting several guest productions).

Director Drew Douris-O’Hara hopes audiences are as excited as he is about the production.

“When we were programming a show to come back out of the pandemic, to put in front of an audience that hasn’t seen plays in two years, we were thinking about the (children) who haven’t seen their first play yet,” he says. “What is their introduction to the theatre going to be? We have to play catch up; we’ve missed people who haven’t seen their first play yet. That’s, that’s what’s so special about A Midsummer Night’s Dream. It’s a warm embrace, and that’s been the mantra throughout the process. We want this play and this experience to be a welcome home and a warm embrace.”

Ameeta Vohra reports for Halifax Magazine.

Hundreds rely on food banks
People around Nova Scotia continue to rely on food banks, as reflected by the strong demand for services like Mulgrave’s Community Food Connection. The program, which launched last November and wrapped up on June 11, provided over 10,000 frozen meals to participants in Guysborough County, according to organizers.

“In lots of ways, it’s a good news story and it’s a story that brings a lot of attention to problems that people are experiencing as well,” says Al England, chair of the board of directors of the Mulgrave and Area Medical Centre. “We were pleased with the numbers, as a matter of fact, it exceeded our expectations. Then we reached a broad area of the region as well.”

Jake Boudrot has more for The Reporter.

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This story was originally published in Halifax Magazine.

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