The Five Fishermen Grill enters its first Burger Week

The Five Fishermen Grill takes part in its first Burger Week, inspired by The Auction House’s success last year.

There are 60 restaurants participating in Burger Week this year; the Five Fishermen Grill made sure it was one of them.

The restaurant, in downtown Halifax, is participating in the popular food event for the first time.

Halifax Burger Week showcases burger venues across HRM. Most burgers sell for about $5 with some of the proceeds being donated to Feed Nova Scotia. The Coast launched the first Burger Week in 2013.

The Five Fishermen Grill’s Burger Week special is the $5 Portobello Burger. It made 37 burgers on Thursday, the first day of the event, and 131 on the next.

Heather Brown, the restaurant’s general manager, said they got a boost from the new Burger Bus, which took diners around to different locations before Burger Week began.

“We got really good reviews for our burger. People talked about it a lot, so by the time Burger Week started there was already a bit of talk about the Five Fishermen burger,” said Brown. “We were busy right off the start.”

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Brown is also manager of the Auction House restaurant two doors down from the Five Fishermen. The Auction House participated in Burger Week last year, and that convinced Five Fishermen to take part this year.

“Burger Week was brought to our attention last year around this time, and at that point the Auction House had only been open a few months, so we thought it was a great way to bring our presence to the attention of the public,” said Brown. “So we participated, and had a lot of success.”

This year, the Auction House made 200 burgers during the first day of Burger Week. On Day 2, it made 355 of them, mainly the Tandoori and Chorizo Burger.

“We average about 300 to 400 burgers a day during Burger Week,” said Brown. He added those numbers are about 50 per cent of their sales during the week.

About $30,000 was raised for Feed Nova Scotia in the first two years of Burger Week.

James Stevens is participating in his first Burger Week as a customer and has been to two burger joints.

“I think it’s awesome. We get to try burger places all over the city and also most places are donating money to Feed Nova Scotia, which is a great thing to do,” said Stevens.

Panel at Dalhousie aims to start conversation on racism and misogyny

A panel at Dalhousie University discussed racism and sexism on Thursday in response to International Women’s Day and the Dalhousie dentistry scandal.

Ahead of International Women’s Day, a panel called Forum on Racism and Sexism was presented Thursday by the Dalhousie University Gender and Women’s Studies Program, South House and the Dalhousie Student Union.

A classroom at Dalhousie was packed with students from around Halifax; some people had to stand to hear the panel.

The panel focused on the problems faced by marginalized racial and gender communities, and how they relate to each other. The speakers discussed their personal experiences of racism, sexism and the problems faced in society by being a person of colour, a woman or non-binary. Non-binary means someone is nether male or female, or is a combination of both.

Panel speakers included Dorota Glowacka, a contemporary studies professor at University of King’s College; Halifax Regional Municipality Poet Laureate, El Jones; Greyson Jones, PhD student at Dalhousie University researching transgender issues; and Tino Chiome, QBIPOC community organizer.

Leandré Govindsamy faces racism in class at Dalhousie and thinks the panel was a good way to start the discussion about misogyny and racism.

“I am brown, I’m Indian, so I’m not a typical white student,” said Govindsamy. “Coming to class and being the only brown person does affect you. It makes you be not as confident which is kind of sad, because you should be confident no matter what.”

Govindsamy says that she also encounters sexism in class.

“In class profs will speak to the male students more than they will speak to the female students.”

Tino Chiome, one of the speakers, says he too faces racial problems in his daily life.

“People may not be overtly racist, but they subconsciously have these feeling and notions about people that they put into practice,” said Chiome.

“You walk into a store and you see security guards following you around, or you walk in a convenience store and the guy at the counter suddenly has to fix something in the back just to watch you,” said Chiome. “So it’s little things like that, where you realize this doesn’t happen to anyone else, only when you go in.”

This panel was created in response to a forum on misogyny in January that discussed the Dalhousie dentistry scandal.

In December 2014, 14 male Dalhousie dentistry students were found to have been involved in misogynist activities towards female classmates in the Class of DSS 2015 Gentlemen Facebook page.

While discussing the dentistry scandal, the January panel found racism to be a recurring topic in misogyny.

The panel was also organized as an International Women’s Day event. International Women’s Day was on Sunday.

Margaret Denike, associate professor at Dalhousie University co-organized and moderated the panel. She hopes people learn compassion and understanding from this panel.

“I want them to take whatever best helps them become more compassionate and more understanding and more accepting of others, and I think we have a really tall order in doing that,” said Denike.

Protesters march for safer sidewalks in Halifax

Group marches from Halifax North Memorial Public Library to Falkland Street in protest of icy sidewalks

A crowd of almost 100 people gathered in front of the Halifax North Memorial Public Library on Friday and marched two blocks to Falkland Street in protest of icy sidewalk conditions.

Chants such as, “Clear the sidewalk, clear the streets, people can’t get out to eat,” could be heard as the crowd marched down Gottingen Street. Some carried signs made of bristol board, while others carried hot beverages to keep warm.

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While protesters marched on the streets, reporters stuck to the sidewalks. One reporter carrying a large video camera slipped on the ice, which one protester called an example of bad sidewalk conditions.

“Just seeing the conditions of the sidewalks … even in the days and weeks following the snow, they haven’t improved,” said protester Alix Todd. “If it seemed like the city was making progress and it was slow progress, I would understand, but it seems like they think that these sidewalks are good enough.”

Todd said that the sidewalks on Gottingen Street are in a “pretty despicable state.”

“I normally enjoy going out for a walk just for exercise and fresh air, and I certainly haven’t been doing that in a few weeks,” Todd said.

Wes MacLean, who needs a walker to help him get around, finds it hard to go outside with sidewalks in their current condition.

“[The sidewalks don’t] allow me to get out, I’m shut in. I can’t do any walking for exercise, and on a fixed income, I can’t pay for physio, so I count on getting out on a daily or bi-daily basis,” said MacLean, who came out to the protest.

MacLean said some people have had to cancel medical appointments and have had trouble visiting soup kitchens and food banks because they are unable to safely travel using the sidewalks.

Jennifer Stairs, a spokeswoman for Halifax Regional Municipality, said extreme weather is to blame for the icy sidewalk conditions. “We appreciate residents’ frustrations with the impact this is having on their day-to-day activities. The recent and sustained extreme weather conditions have certainly posed challenges for everyone, including crews,” she said.

“We must recognize that, in aftermath of atypical weather conditions, our typical expectations cannot be met.”