Roundup: No word on ferry fire cause, N.S. faces ‘very high’ COVID hazard, South Shore athletes earn hall of fame nod, embracing East Coast style

Passengers evacuate the P.E.I. ferry on Friday. Photo: Adam Smith

Plus: A thriving mixed martial arts community emerges as Halifax embraces one of the world’s fastest-growing sports

Investigators are still sussing out the cause of Friday’s fire on the MV Holiday Island, which sent passengers scrambling for the lifeboats during an afternoon crossing from Caribou, N.S. to Wood Islands, P.E.I.

Northumberland Ferries vice-president Don Cormier says the crew quickly contained the blaze.

“(The) captain took necessary precautions and dropped both anchors and directed the ship onto a soft shoal outside the harbour entrance to Wood Islands,” he explains in a press release. “There are no reported injuries to customers or crew.”

Steve Goodwin reports for the Pictou Advocate.

Dr. Tara Moriarty

COVID danger continues
Nova Scotia faces “very high” hazard from COVID-19, says infectious disease researcher Dr. Tara Moriarty in her latest series of tweets analyzing the pandemic.

Her research indicates that, as of July 22, the disease was infecting 2,800 Nova Scotians per day, with 150 per day contracting “long COVID,” suffering symptoms that last at least a month.

Premier Tim Houston’s government is now withholding most COVID data, only releasing monthly epidemiologic reports, so Moriarty urges people to continue to use public health protections, and seek information from other sources.

“We don’t have to feel powerless,” she tweets. “We can get the information we need, and we can protect and help others. Continuing to do this is an assertion that basic human decency matters. It’s refusal to give in to anger and misinformation and polarization.”

World Health Organization officials report 989,766 confirmed new COVID cases around the globe in the last 24 hours. So far, COVID is known to have killed at least 6,373,739 people, including 42,148 in Canada and 463 Nova Scotians.

Peter Martell. Photo: Bruce Murray

Mixed martial arts on the rise
It’s not the first adjective most people apply, but mixed martial arts is a surprisingly egalitarian sport.

Local coach Peter Martell describes it as “pretty accessible” in Canada because little equipment is necessary.

“At one point it was the second fastest growing sport in the world behind soccer,” he says. “Nova Scotia produces a lot of high-level MMA fighters per capita, from different walks of life. They come from east, west, Newfoundland and Labrador to Dartmouth.” 

In the latest issue of Unravel Halifax, Chris Benjamin visits local fight clubs and meets the men and women embracing the sport.

Embracing East Coast style
The Muir is an opulent new hotel in the waterfront’s sprawling Queen’s Marque development, but unlike its high-end rivals, it has a distinctively Nova Scotian vibe that designers tried to carry through the art, décor, and design.

“Muir is intended to be an experience born of this place,” says developer Scott Armour McCrea. “People want to feel they are part of a place when they visit. They want to immerse themselves in that experience. When people go to Paris, they want that Parisian feeling.”

Shelley Cameron-McCarron has the story for East Coast Living.

Laura Fielding was a member of Dalhousie’s national champion soccer team in 1994. Photo: Submitted

South Shore athletes earn hall of fame nod
Bridgewater’s Kim Fralick (class of 2000) and Laura Fielding (1993) are being feted for their accomplishments as student-athletes.

Fralick, who was a basketball player at Mount Saint Vincent University, was inducted into the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association last month.

Fielding was a member of the 1994 Dalhousie women’s soccer team that won the team’s first-ever national crown. She, along with her teammates, is scheduled for induction into the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame in November.

“It’s been a long time coming, but I’m excited that we’re nominated. My heart is always going to belong in Nova Scotia,” says Fielding, who now lives in British Columbia. “Even if I didn’t have family here anymore, I would still come back to the South Shore.”

Kevin McBain has more for LighthouseNow.

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