The Bulletin: The Chrysalis Season of Montreal [Issue #44]

The Bulletin is a collection of what's happened, what’s happening, and what’s to come in and around Montreal.

The Main

The Main

September 28, 2023- Read time: 10 min
The Bulletin: The Chrysalis Season of Montreal [Issue #44]MAPP_MTL, Montreal's international projection mapping festival, kicked off its weekend full of electronic music, food, creative workshops in a block party setting. (Photo credit: Facebook)

You know how we waxed poetic last week about the "official" end of summer? Nah son, turns out that's ridiculous.

Just like how you can catch people wearing their August evening best as they bar hop in -25 degree weather along St. Laurent Boulevard, a sun setting earlier on the city hasn't made a dent in how active we are and can be.

CORRIDOR Festival, MAPP_MTL, POP Montreal, Gallery Weekend — all of that's on the menu, events so big that they dress the cityscape in art for one hot minute of a weekend. Much like those new neighbours of yours in the Plateau who want to make it as big as EDM DJs, the music doesn't stop for a second in this town.  

This time between seasons is a chrysalis period for Montreal, not only as we assess and reassess what we can do with ourselves, but what we'll become in the future. That seems to be the vibe when you look at the past week's news about urban transformations and failures, cultural futures, and coming out on the other end a changed city.

Read on and see what we mean.

Activities, parties, points of interest, art exhibitions, you name it: These are the weekend events you don't want to miss.

The big ticket this weekend: CORRIDOR Festival

The CORRIDOR Festival, organized by Corridor Culturel, is bringing public art, music and heritage together from September 28 to October 8 in Griffintown and along the Lachine Canal. More than a dozen events—artistic performances, musical evenings and The Main's own free guided tours—will be offered to highlight creativity, local communities, and Montreal's unique heritage through interpretations by contemporary artists.

Don't miss their opening party at Terrasse MR, including the unveiling of a public exhibition featuring 16 works by local artists and creators, DJ sets, four live painting artists, and top notch cocktails.


  • POP Montreal's annual international music fest kicked off yesterday with 400+ bands scheduled to play in more than 50 venues across the city.
  • MAPP_MTL, Montreal's international projection mapping festival, has begun its weekend full of electronic music, food, creative workshops with the Société des Arts Technologiques, screen-printing, and more in a block party setting.
  • Les Journées de la culture's month of free cultural activities across Quebec has begun. The options in Montreal alone are bursting at the seams.
  • Enter a psychedelic landscape as textures and colours implode in the SAT dome during Recombination, the latest project from visionary artist Julius Horsthuis.


  • Gallery Weekend invites you to visit Montreal's contemporary art galleries and discover a wide selection of exhibitions showcasing the work of their many artists.
  • The Age of Union Centre, a non-profit environmental alliance for environmental preservation, is hosting a new fall/winter vernissage of installations and conservation artwork.
  • Massimadi Festival's celebration of Afro-queer arts, film, and cultures continues until Saturday—catch the action before it ends.



  • Discover local products handmade by dedicated artists at the Puces POP market, from pottery to body care products, gourmet treats, home accessories, and more.
  • Take part in MONKTOBERFEST on the Terrasse St-Georges at Théâtre Paradoxe, a showcase of more than a dozen Monk Boulevard merchants.
  • The historic instruments of the Monastère du Bon-Pasteur were moved to the Paul-Desmarais Hall of the Canadian Center for Architecture following the devastating fire earlier this year, and a whole season of performances is underway.
  • As part of the exhibition Becoming Montréal, the McCord Stewart Museum invited Urban Sketchers Montréal to rediscover where James Duncan sketched between the years of 1830 and 1880, and is showing their works.

Photo credit: Ăn Chè Desserts


Scope the latest restaurant openings, recommendations on where to eat, plus new menus, old classics, and everything in between.

  • Linh Le Kim and her pop-up Ăn Chè Desserts is headed to Studio Image Motion on October 1st from 3pm to 8pm with entrees and drinks by @hongnguyenfoods.
  • Paul Toussaint's pan-Caribbean restaurant Kamúy is hosting Chinatown's Dobe & Andy on October 1st for Asian-Caribbean platters from 1pm 'til it's sold out.
  • Alma is launching a new series of special events one Sunday per month: A 7-course taco omakase by chef Juan Lopez Luna, plus a revolving line-up of guest chefs.
  • Atwater Market's hosting an Oktoberfest with nearly 100 craft beers, food from the market's restaurateurs, and entertainment. Admission is free, and tasting glasses are $3.50.
  • Work in the industry? Maybe you don't? Doesn't matter: Tittle Tattle's hosting industry nights on Sundays with $10 speedrail cocktails and beers.
  • Griffintown's AYLA has officially joined the Montreal brunch scene on Saturdays from 11am to 3pm with signature Mediterranean spins on classics.
  • Black Lagoon, a Halloween cocktail pop-up experience, is coming to 132 Bar Vintage and will run from October 1 to 31st.
  • Quebec's largest vegan event since 2014, the Montreal Vegan Festival, returns with lectures, cooking demonstrations, workshops, and exhibitors at the Palais des congrès.

Pure abundance

Inaugurated in 1933, the Jean-Talon Market is the largest farmers' market in Montreal and one of the largest in North America. Its primary mission all those years ago is the same one it still promotes today: to feed people with the freshest ingredients — here's why it holds an important place in the hearts of Montrealers. (The Main)

Farm to Table: The True Influence of Public Markets in Montreal’s Dining Scene
What kind of role do public markets play in Montreal’s food culture? Food writer Mayssam Samaha spoke to vendors and chefs at the Jean-Talon Market to find out.

Here, you'll find a weekly round-up of the latest local news, from entertainment to current affairs and more.

A forum for open discussion and discovery

What can Montreal’s Chinatown symbolize and be beyond transactional exchanges at bubble tea shops? What happens if more of us considered the neighbourhood a part of our home, now granted official heritage status in Quebec? That's what JIA Foundation 's Chinatown Reimagined Forum II aims to answer. (The Main)

Reimagining the Future of Montreal’s Chinatown
As Chinatowns across North America continue to face challenges related to expropriation, gentrification, crime and aging populations, a local organization has come together to present a forum for open discussion and discovery.

Losing legends, losing lifeblood

"From what I can see, the City of Montreal hasn’t done much to protect its culture scene," write Yara El-Soueidi. "Today, saying that Montreal has a thriving culture scene is quite a stretch." What more can be done to save it? (Montreal Gazette)

El-Soueidi: Is this the end of Montreal’s celebrated culture scene?
The closing of small venues is making it hard for artists to survive, never mind thrive, in what was once Canada’s cultural capital.

Play it again, Bon-Pasteur

A 19th century former monastery was closed indefinitely following a five-alarm, 24-hour blaze. Now the CCA has opened its theatre to the musicians of the historic chapel and its salvaged instruments. Find the link to the performances in our weekend planner for Sunday. (CBC Montreal)

Music lives on after Montreal monastery fire nearly ruins historic instruments | CBC News
A Fazioli concert grand piano and a 1772 Kirckman harpsichord were rescued from the monastery, and though damaged, both instruments were restored. Free concerts, once offered in the chapel, will continue at the Canadian Centre of Architecture.

Why not just, you know, wait until winter?

While the creep of winter arguably offers the same, you could spend up to $1,200 to stay in absolute darkness for three to seven days in the Eastern Townships. It's an increasingly popular practice with little supervision, but experts warn of potential health risks. (Noovo)

VIDÉO | Des retraites dans le noir clandestines offertes au Québec
«Le noir absolu invite à un profond plongeon en soi.» À l’invitation d’un professeur de méditation et entrepreneur dans le domaine de la croissance personnelle, des adeptes paient jusqu’à 1200$ pour passer trois à sept jours dans l’obscurité la plus totale, en Estrie. Une pratique de plus en plus po…

Not in this town, you don't!

Welp, that sort of lasted long: Loto-Québec will not open a gaming hall in downtown Montreal with hundreds of slot machines in the premises of the former Taverne 1909 restaurant, adjacent to the Bell Centre, after all. (Le Devoir)

Loto-Québec retire son projet de salon de jeux au centre-ville de Montréal
La société d’État a indiqué que «les conditions ne sont pas réunies pour assurer le succès de la démarche».

Crusty, cheesy and not that photogenic

Montreal's most popular pizzerias over the past decade have taken a page from the world's top pizza cities, from Detroit and New York to Naples. But when’s the last time a new restaurant opened with the goal of perfecting—let alone proudly serving—Montreal-style pizza? (MTL Blog)

Montreal-Style Pizza Is (Still) A Thing — Here’s Where To Get A Slice Before It Disappears
The city’s pizza scene is having an identity crisis right now.

An urban plan lacking fuel

Dozens of gas stations have closed in recent years, the start of a wave that's unlikely to stop any time soon. The stakes are high: Will their land, often contaminated but very well located, be abandoned or redeveloped? (La Presse)

Photo credit: Josie Desmarais, La Presse

Catapulted across a country

This is the story of how St-Viateur Bagel shipped nearly 5,000 golden rings to the Vancouver International Airport less than 24 hours out of the oven. The order was the bakery’s biggest one by individuals in its 66-year history. (Globe & Mail)

Flour power: Montreal bagels make cross-country journey to delight Vancouverites
After landing at Vancouver International Airport, and less than 24 hours out of the oven, volunteers helped deliver shipments to community foodie group

Nothing to see here—literally

Remember that announced project for a small “urban forest” in the heart of Montreal back in 2021? It's been postponed for several years due to a construction traffic jam in the Quartier des spectacles. Designers say it risks being forgotten entirely. (La Presse)


Not a surprise, but kind of a surprise

Income inequality, known for its corrosive effects on health, happiness and community ties, is worse in Westmount than in any other place in Canada, according to a ranking assembled by Toronto Metropolitan University's Local News Data Hub. (CBC Montreal)

Westmount, TMR rank among 5 most unequal municipalities in Canada, analysis shows | CBC News
Other Quebec municipalities near the top of the list were Côte Saint-Luc in 12th position and Beaconsfield, which was 17th. Among the most equal, in terms of lowest and highest incomes, were Mirabel and Saint-Basile-le-Grand.

And that wraps yet another weekly bulletin. We’ll be back with more curiosities, local stories, and events to discover next week.

If ever you catch something we should know, don't hesitate to reach out to us on Instagram. Oh, and tell your friends!