Festivals beginning. Line-ups announced. Street closures. Reunion tours. Revved engines. 30 degree weather that’s about a month early. That guy popping off bottle rockets in the middle of Jarry Park at 4 a.m. (you know who you are!).
There is a moment during what the calendar calls spring in Montreal that preemptively becomes summer. Call it a vibe, or a switch we flip unconsciously in our collective head: We shed layers, we grab roadies from deps, we strike up conversations with strangers, and suddenly everything gets a whole lot sexier.
That’s all in keeping with this week’s news, as events have expanded to include (gasp!) Thursdays and our stories largely point to how we could be more or how we’re doing more. There's so much happening on Sunday alone that you may need to clear your calendars entirely.
Speaking of which: See you in that field of 10,000 sunflowers.
Read on for more.
Weekend events you don’t want to miss
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- Montreal author Toula Drimonis will be joined by Le Devoir's Marie-Ève Brassard at Librairie St-Henri Books in what should make for an exciting conversation about her most recent work.
- Ville-Émard's newest hotspot Café Monk is donating $1 to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of Canada for every West Shefford beer sold. Stop in for a beer and a good cause!
- Rug makers @hotjellygoods will double act by hosting a comedy improv night at retail gallery space Chaque Mois as part of this month's artisan showcase.
- Don't miss the launch event for the 9th edition of Jardins Gamelin, the ephemeral space that occupies part of Parc Émilie-Gamelin every summer.
- There's a new festival in town, and this one is all about coffee, coffee, coffee. Over the course of three days, 30 micro-roasters will showcase their products at WIP in celebration of independent cafés.
- The Montreal Comic Arts Festival will again set up tents on the stretch of Saint-Denis between Gilford and Roy to welcome over 250 artists and 160 exhibitors throughout the weekend.
- Festival TransAmériques, an international festival of dance and theatre, has a couple of free outdoor shows happening over at Esplanade Tranquille.
- Several bands will join forces at the Corona Theatre for a spectacular tribute to the vibrant new wave era of the early to mid-1980s in Montreal.
- For two days, MILE END EN FÊTE will fill the hipster neighbourhood with a ton of activities including concerts, live painting, projection mapping, and more to promote Mile End and its merchants.
- Head down to Hangar 1825 on the Lachine Canal for the 2nd edition of Soif de cidre, an alcohol-fuelled event featuring 30 cider producers.
- Pass by Le Livart to check out the 2023 collection of Art Volt, a platform supporting recent alumni of Concordia’s Fine Arts program.
- The 2023 season of OfF Piknic 2023 gets underway at Parc Jean-Drapeau with performances by techno DJ Charlotte de Witte and others.
- Back again for another weekend show, Latin music festival Fuego Fuego kicks off at the Parc Olympique with headliners scheduled to perform over two days.
- Hochelaga's café-wine bar SUPERNAT is hosting a block party for its 1st birthday. Expect tacos, a live DJ set, and looots of vino.
- The collab launch of the Lieux Communs x Zamalek '22 hibiscus piquette will go down on the terrasse of Pumpui, starting at noon.
- Catch a screening of Quebec-made documentary The Hearing and stick around for a Q&A or panel discussion at either Cinéma du Musée or Cinéma Public.
- CastelFranco is throwing the 2nd edition of BONG DIA over at La Rama Records alongside Stronzato pizza. Bring your own chair?
- Seven vendors are getting together to throw the first edition of Le Vintage Club in the Village, where you can expect everything from vintage clothing to wine courtesy of Vinorama's thoughtful curator.
- Bar Wills is celebrating the launch of MORE THAN CAKE, a book by Natasha Pickowicz, with a festive event full of burgers, beats, books, and—duh—cake.
- And, last but not least, the croissant competition of your dreams will take place to crown the winner of Montreal's best of the best.
What you need to know
ICYMI: A weekly round-up of the latest local news, from food and entertainment to current affairs and more.
All that could have been
Using one of the latest engines for 3D visualization, Moshe Safdie and his architecture firm have been able to digitally recreate Habitat 67 based on its original concept that was first envisioned 56 years ago. (Unreal Engine)
Money can't buy happiness, but it can pay for plastic surgery
After a decade of delays, the city is finally getting the recovery of decrepit, overgrown, crumbling urbex gem that is the former public plaza and open-air amphitheatre known as Place des Nations off the ground. Here's why you should take one last look at it. (Cult MTL)
Nationwide initiative aims to save indie cinemas
As streaming services and large entities like Cineplex continue to dominate the lion's share of the cinema industry, the Network of Independent Canadian Exhibitors is calling on citizens to write to their local politicians to make sure indie theatres can survive—and overcome–some of the current barriers. (The Main)
DESTRUCTION PORN 🤘
Well, sort of: The city's biggest earthquake on record from September 16, 1732 is helping researchers predict the impact if another one struck today. Why? Montrealers may not realize it, but eastern Canada is one of the country's regions most prone to earthquakes. (Montreal Gazette)
There's an app for that
“Parky AI”, a new tool to help decipher Montreal parking signs, was born after the company's CEO got a parking ticket that he blamed on confusing signs. While that might seem comical, it was downloaded 10,000 times in its first week. (CTV News)
I am the night.
Following largely successful parties that permitted dancing and alcohol well past the limits of your average bar, organizers are saying that Montreal is not doing enough to support a nightlife scene that could be far more vibrant than it already is. (Le Devoir)
It's basically art at this point
The dilapidated century-old buildings at one entrance to Old Montreal are proving to be a thorn in the side of developers and politicians. In the hands of the Palais des Congrès, demolition is being considered despite their heritage value. (La Presse)
If you grow them, they will come
Part of a larger, five-year urban development plan to attract businesses and people, north end Montreal's La Prairie Louvain is hoping that 10,000 sunflowers will draw us all in to the Ahuntsic–Cartierville borough this summer. (CBC Montreal)
Take a bite outta the clouds
Since closing the observatory on the 45th and 46th floors of the PVM in 2020, Ivanhoé Cambridge (the folks behind the Le 9e's revival in the Eaton Centre) has made plans to turn it into the cheekily-named three-floor dining option Hiatus, all part of a bigger plan to revitalize the downtown core. (Cision)
One of the legends
On this day more than 40 years ago, the Gazette ran a photo on the front page showing the Great Antonio Barichievich doing one of his famous public stunts: Pulling buses by chains. That led us to find this documentary on the strongman and professional wrestler who died in 2003. (YouTube)
Posts of the Week
Our favourite moments from Twitter.
That wraps up this week's edition. We’ll be back with more curiosities, local stories, and events to discover next week.
And if ever you catch something we should know, reach out to us on Instagram.