Roundup: Strang warns against complacency, nurses create app to help Lunenburg newcomers find services, Pictou Lobster Carnival returns, millennials head east

The Bluenose, circa 1921. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

The province’s chief medical officer of health is warning people not to be smug about Nova Scotia’s relatively low COVID-19 numbers.

“Low case numbers are a promising sign, but it does not mean we can become complacent,” Dr. Robert Strang says in a press release. “We need to be mindful of what’s happening in other provinces and know that the situation in Nova Scotia could change quickly if we let our guard down.”

Nova Scotia has 37 known active cases of COVID-19, with two new Central Zone cases reported in the latest government update. One person is currently hospitalized with the disease.

Nova Scotian labs did 1,989 tests on Apr. 6, and 318,871 since October. The pandemic has killed 66 people in the province.

As of Apr. 6, health-care workers have dispensed 123,166 doses of COVID-19 vaccine, with 30,069 Nova Scotians getting the second dose that completes their immunization.

From left: Hazelle Mahinay, Ken Martinez, Lehcel Tacda, and Mona Crisostomo.

Helping Lunenburg County connect
When nurses Mona Crisostomo, Hazelle Mahinay, Ken Martinez, and Lehcel Tacda (all originally from the Philippines) came to Lunenburg County, they didn’t have personal relationships that locals often rely on for word-of-mouth referrals.

“The first time we came here to Nova Scotia, we had a very hard time finding services around,” says Martinez. “With moving and coming to a new province, you’re in a new community. We had trouble finding services such as a mechanic.”

Unable to find an app with the information they needed, they decided to create their own, and it’s quickly become a valuable community tool.

Raissa Tetanish reports for LighthouseNow.

Lobster Carnival returns
Last year, COVID-19 kiboshed the Pictou Lobster Carnival for the first time since the Second World War. This year, organizers plan to bring it back. But this year, the event is less focused on tourists.

“It won’t be the same as in other years,” says chairman Shawn McNamara. “We are going to do something for the town of Pictou and Pictou County.”

With government approval of the event plan yet to come, details are scant, but McNamara hopes lots of volunteers sign up to help. “We’ll need people for cleaning … more servers,” he adds. “And all of these rules could change … We’re just going week by week.”

Jackie Jardine reports for The Pictou Advocate.

Photo: Trevor J. Adams

Ahead by a century
Mahone Bay’s Saltbox Brewing Co. is offering a new ale to mark the 100th anniversary of the launch of the iconic Bluenose schooner.

“Our brewery is known for its strong commitment to local lore and community outreach,” says Saltbox vice-president Andrew Tanner. “We can think of nothing more exciting for us than to be part of this celebration.”

Sharing its name with the anniversary event, the Bluenose 100 beer is a low-alcohol (4.7%) cream ale. Bishop’s Cellar offers these tasting notes: “Rich golden malt aromas of freshly baked bread, and subtle honey that are balanced with herbal and spicy hop character. Mouth-feel is smooth, with balanced bitterness and a clean finish with just a touch of sweetness and moderate carbonation.”

Gayle Wilson has details for Halifax Magazine.

Back down the road
Ever since Confederation, young Maritimers have heard that they need to go west if they want good jobs and lucrative careers. But the last few years have upended that cliché, as East Coast cities—and Halifax in particular—have become stylish destinations, luring back people who have left and bringing newcomers here to settle.

While municipal governments would like to take credit for the shift, urban planner Tristan Cleveland explains that it’s largely happening despite them.

“Millennials have come to better understand what you need in your environment to live a good, happy life,” Cleveland says. “Lots of good transportation options, easy and convenient-to-walk-to local hangouts. Good public spaces near home. [But] people who make decisions and rules are largely baby boomers.”

See Chris Benjamin’s recent Saltscapes story for more.

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This story was originally published in Halifax Magazine.

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