July always starts with huge Canada Day celebrations in both downtown Halifax and Dartmouth — a great way to kick off a fantastic month full of fun festivals and events. With Canada Day AND the Royal Nova Scotia International Tattoo happening, the first day of July is always buzzing with excitement. One of my favourite things to do is check out the free concert at Alderney Landing (this year the Arkells are headlining) by taking the ferry from the Halifax waterfront, there are so many people out and about, the vibe is awesome. The Tattoo extends to Tuesday, July 7, so be sure to take in at least one of the performances — it’s a guaranteed fun time for all ages.
Right after the Tattoo ends, Halifax Jazz Festival begins! Music lovers, you’re in luck, the headliners for this year’s event (as always) are incredible. The great thing about this festival is that it’s not just jazz — there’s blues, R&B, hip-hop, funk, latin and world music. I know I’ll be there to see Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings! Plus, there’ll be an array of food trucks this year.
Speaking of food trucks — the July edition of The Coast’s Halifax Food Truck Party is on July 16th, just across the street from us in the parking lot of the Museum of Natural History, and they always offer admission by donation during the party until the museum closes!
Overlapping with Jazz Fest is Lebanese Festival, which begins on July 9 and goes through July 12. This one is very close to our hotel, just a five minute walk down to the Saint Antonios Antiochian Orthodox Church on Windsor Street, and has a huge outdoor component. What a great time, with lots of fantastic food (zaatar prepared traditionally on the saj) music, dancing, and even shopping. Admission is free, so there’s really no excuse not to check it out.
Halifax Pride — Canada’s fourth largest pride festival — begins on July 16 and ends on July 26. The day you really want to mark your calendar for is July 25, when the Pride Parade takes over downtown Halifax! There’s a TON of associated events with Pride, and a big ol’ kick-off happening at Grand Parade the first day.
On July 26, you can have the chance to slide down a giant slip-n-slide in downtown Halifax. Sounds crazy to me, but it should be a lot of fun… Slide the City is starting on Citadel Hill, and you can pre-register for your pass to slide on their website.
And last but not least, to cap off July and take us into August, is the beloved Halifax International Buskers Festival. But more about that in the next blog post…