Tuesday, June 22, 2010

BC Brian's visit to Halifax

BC Brian 051In my last blog post, I asked for your advice on how to plan a 45 hour visit for a friend visiting Halifax for the first time.

I asked, you answered. On Facebook, on Twitter, by email and hollering over my cubicle. A page full of your suggestions were printed, folded and tucked in my bag for BC Brian and I to regularly check to make sure nothing was overlooked.

A few hours after BC Brian's arrival, it was time to hit the Halifax waterfront. We were dropped off at the Halifax Town Clock where BC Brian asked if it was a re-constructed lighthouse. This self proclaimed "arrogant westerner" was in for a lesson.

After a stroll along the waterfront boardwalk, being peppered with questions (that sometimes stumped me), we ended up on the patio at the Old Triangle Irish Alehouse. As the evening went on, we continued down the boardwalk to Garrison Brewery where we sampled Jalapeno ale and award-winning Imperial I.P.A. beer. Here we met cruise ship passengers Kelly and Todd of Los Angeles who were staying an extra day due to bad weather elsewhere.

Peggy's CoveThe next morning, after breakfast at Cora's, with the threat of rain showers, BC Brian and I were Peggy's Cove bound. The windy road leading to this classic fishing village just 30 minutes outside Halifax was no stranger to tour buses. Of course, no visit to Peggy's Cove is complete without a visit to the Swiss Air memorial site.

By now, the rain had started and we made a bee line to Pier 21, Canada's Immigration Museum. Having the privilege of working there for 4 years, BC Brian was treated to personalized tour through the exhibits and film, "Oceans of Hope".

BC Brian 027The clock was ticking and our stomachs were rumbling so the next stop was John's Lunch in Dartmouth. So many of you suggested this place for making the best fish and chips in town and for good reason. It was really good. Melt in your mouth fish and buttery clams good. All topped off with being treated like family in this 1969 style diner. The friendly service gave no need for dessert, they were sweet enough.

BC Brian 035After stuffing ourselves and taking a few snaps of Halifax from the Dartmouth side, we headed back over the Macdonald Bridge.

While seafood was on the brain, I quickly realized that one simply CANNOT come to Nova Scotia and not have lobster and a good feed of mussels. Plus, they were on "the list". I have to admit, it was my very first time cooking live lobster without parental supervision. Hoping BC Brian would not notice, I did the best thing I could think of... offer him a Keith's. You see, that was on the list too.

What wasn't on the list was convincing BC Brian to stay another day. You see, all of you suggested such great things and 45 hours simply wasn't enough time to enjoy them all. Thankfully, BC Brian agreed and changed his flight.

This bonus day was BC Brian's self-exploration day and he made good of it. Visiting the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, Rum Runners Rum Cake Factory, Brewery Market and having lunch at the Lower Deck "across from the big cow".

BC Brian 036That evening, after lobster risotto, BC Brian, my husband and I went back to the Old Triangle Irish Alehouse to watch McGinty. These songs and others were played (click to listen):
Barrett's Privateers,
Rollin' Down to Old Maui,
Nancy Whisky

That evening at the Triangle, BC Brian just couldn't stop smiling. My highlight of the evening was when BC Brian turned to me and said, "this is just like the Nova Scotia tourism commercials!"

I wish I could tell you at this point that everything on "the list" was crossed off. In fact, we got about half way through. I figure that you have to leave some things to explore next time. BC Brian tells me that he's hoping that there will be a next time, with his wife in tow. I don't think he'll have too much trouble convincing her, after all, he's our newest tourism ambassador.

So my friends, THANK YOU for your suggestions. Also thanks to Tourism Nova Scotia who shouted out to their followers and likers on Twitter and Facebook.

Most of all, thank you BC Brian for visiting Nova Scotia.

See more pictures from BC Brian's visit on Flickr.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Help me plan BC Brian's 45 hour visit to Halifax

Ferry Tales, HalifaxA few weeks ago I got a phone call from my friend "BC Brian" announcing that he's visiting me in Halifax. Hailing from northwestern British Columbia, this is his first trip to the east coast.

After looking at the calendar, I realized that I have 45 hours to give BC Brian a favourable impression of Halifax.

This is where I'm asking for your advice, your thoughts... your do's and don't's.

Here are the deets: BC Brian arrives next Wednesday at 1 p.m. and leaves Friday at 10 a.m. (for Montreal). He's staying at our house during his brisk 45 hour visit.

Let's factor in the 4 hour time difference.

So what would you do if you were playing tour guide?

BTW, I did ask BC Brian what he'd like to do and I haven't heard from him yet so I am taking it upon myself to ask you. Just like the Canadian Tourism Commission's "Locals know" campaign.

Here's BC Brian's persona (not his actual photo):

- Retired
- Male
- City Councilor
- loves nature, red wine and beer

Send me your ideas, I can't wait to hear from you:

Email: maria.mcgowan@gmail.com
Twitter: therightcoastns
Facebook: http://bit.ly/TRCFacebook

I'll let you know how the 44 hours came and went.