Winter has come (again) in more ways than one: Not that it's been the only to come in the past week, but right now, businesses are hurting bad. With the loans of the pandemic numbering as high as $40,000 coming due, many smaller enterprises are facing the reality of finally calling it quits. Economic hard times are afoot, perhaps more so now than ever.
There are a million and one idea for cheap things to do in the city, but if you can? Now's the time to pay a visit to not only your local spots, but also those places you always meant to go to. To support local artists. To do what you can, where you can. We've done it once before, and we can do it again.
Those looking to go out on the cheap, you'd do well to check out this week's WHERE TO EAT & DRINK section—it's full of suggestions of addresses to eat well for less.
Activities, parties, points of interest, art exhibitions, you name it: These are the weekend events you don't want to miss.
- Luminothérapie's annual interactive art event continues to transform downtown's Place des Festivals and the Quartier des spectacles into an illuminated playground.
- The CCA's Out of the Box exhibition series in its Octagonal gallery is, this time around, dedicated to the work of Argentinian architect Amancio Williams (1913–1989), a key figure in modern architecture in South America.
- David Pryde, who's taken the stage at Just For Laughs and The Tonight Show, will be on stage at the Comedy Nest.
- Dunes (aka the Desert Blues Ensemble) will be bringing their trans-African grooves, twangy guitars and of course, blues to Quai de Brumes.
- Head a bit off-island to see Matt Holubowski play from his new album Like Flowers on a Molten Lawn at Longueuil's Théâtre de la Ville.
- The Gracefully Hip's Tragically Hip tribute concert is going on at Beanfield.
- 35+ vendors are bringing together plenty of vintage clothing, jewelry, and other items to Le Marché Vintage at Église St-Ambroise.
- Performance artist Psyberia is back with a new MUSICBOX to kick off 2024 with a bunch of weird and wild music at Brasserie Beaubien.
- Age of Union's ongoing exhibition Looking to the Future is recognizing the value in Indigenous Knowledge systems as a path to an ecologically balanced future.
- What’s up, Doc? An orchestral performance of classical music and classic animation is mixing Bugs Bunny and the Looney Tunes at Place des Arts.
- FYI, the skaters' path at Parc Jean-Drapeau is refrigerated and maintained regularly, and it offers a spectacular view of the river.
WHAT TO EAT & DRINK IN AND AROUND MONTREAL: THE INFLATION EDITION 💸
Scope the latest restaurant openings and closings due to (spoiler alert) current economic climes, recommendations on where to eat, plus new menus, old classics, and everything in between—this time, for a lower price.
- Bar Otto's doing four-course omakase menus for $60. Not bad.
- Verdun Beach is going all out with $2 oysters from Sunday to Wednesday, $30 three-service menus on Wednesdays, and 40% off SUNSHINE wine bottles on Sundays and Mondays.
- Join drag queens Uma Gahd and Selma Gahd at Robin Des Bois in Parc La Fontaine for brunch on Jan 13.
- Momesso announced its sale previously, but now, NDG's Italian sub destination is closing officially on January 27th, so get 'em while you can.
- Forget 2023 ever happened by drinking one or three cocktails for $12 a pop over at Chifa.
- Local confectionary and chocolate maker Dinette Nationale has announced that it will be closing after 15 years in the business, so go shop while you can.
- Rejoice, bottles of wine are now offered at 25% off after 10pm every night of the week at Sparrow.
- Bishop & Bagg is fighting inflation by serving specials on house beers, wine and speedrail cocktails, $7 apiece, for their 5 à 7s from Monday to Friday.
From SWANA with love
Montreal's sometimes called a "crossroads of North America and Europe", and it can be a largely Eurocentric here in both tastes and presentation. At HENI, the script isn’t being flipped per se, but expanded, a restaurant making space for relatively underexplored parts of the world in the city’s dining scene. (The Main)
Here, you'll find a weekly round-up of the latest local news, from entertainment to current affairs and more.
More than 3.5 million meals saved
Just a friendly that there's an app that connects consumers with less-than-perfect but still perfectly edible food: Too Good To Go helps people avoid throwing out food they're is unable to sell over the counter. You know, the uggo stuff. (CTV News)
Quebec City ain't gonna like this
Montreal wants a public transportation line—maybe a tramway?—on Jean-Talon Ouest from Cavendish Boulevard to Parc Avenue, which would be about six kilometers as part of a complete redevelopment of the artery. (La Presse)
We're sowwy 😔
So tourists haven't been too happy about the lack of snow-capped rooftops in the city, but given the amount of snow we've seen within a matter of days, WHO'S LAUGHING NOW? (CBC Montreal)
Spin it again, Sam
A fixture in Montreal's music scene and a destination for those looking for a rare pressing or B-side, Beatnick Records is up for sale. After 25 years, owner Nick Catalano is selling the store, saying that it's time for someone younger to take over.(CTV News)
FYI, about 20% of restaurants in QC have closed since 2019
As the $40,000 loans from the federal government's emergency funds during the pandemic are coming due on January 18 during an economic slowdown, will restaurants have good enough traffic to survive? The ARQ expects a bunch of recent closures at the start of 2024 is just the beginning. (Le Devoir)
Less than partially impartial
The thin blue line slogan has been around for about a century, so when it was seen worn by security guards photographed at Complexe Guy-Favreau this past summer? It's more than problematic, and definitely symptomatic. (The Rover)
Next catchphrase: "When the St. Lawrence freezes over"
For a fifth consecutive winter, the ice cover is slow to form on the St. Lawrence River, and the delay is even worse than expected. Rapid changes in average temperatures have been alarming for experts, and the outlook isn't good. (CBC Montreal)
And that wraps yet another weekly bulletin. We’ll be back with more curiosities, local stories, and events to discover next week.
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