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Finer dining

TC Demaresq browses for business news.

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Things are busy at the Finer Diner in Hackett's Cove when I call. Only a week after opening, co-owner Peter MacPherson says things are "rocking along." MacPherson knows a thing or two about rocking. After a long stint as the manager and booker at The Attic nightclub, he and his wife, Sarah Irwin, decided to try their hand at a business close to home. "We've been living out here for four or five years and we had been doing the commute to Halifax for awhile. We were tired of it." MacPherson and Irwin decided to put their knowledge of the hospitality industry to work and took the plunge by purchasing a vacant restaurant on Peggy's Cove Road. The building used to house The Drop Anchor, and the Cork and Pickle. The spot was in disrepair when they bought it in January, and they've worked "all but two days" since the purchase renovating the space. The restaurant contains many classic elements of a diner, including a checkerboard floor and counter seating. Irwin's artwork hangs on the walls, and a patio overlooks Boutlier's Cove, which MacPherson says is one of the most picturesque coves on the route. "Our slogan is "food with a view,'" he says. To contact the restaurant, located at 9976 Peggy's Cove Road, call 821-3434.

Market value

The Halifax Farmers' Market will be packing up and moving to a brand-new $9.75 million facility next to Pier 21. Construction on the new, eco-friendly building will begin this fall, and is expected to take about a year. Not only will it be twice the size of the current market space, but there is talk of it being a daily operation. Does this mean a cure for my Tuesday afternoon wild boar cravings? When it opens the market will be re-named the Halifax Seaport Farmer's Market, but I suspect most people will just keep calling it The Market.

Photo shop'd

Brian Larter, a freelance photographer in Halifax for several years, had seen need for affordable studio space for amateur and professional photographers alike. Employment ads for photographers run in local papers with the requirement "must have access to studio." Larter decided it was time to level the playing field, opening Aperture Studios at 1657 Barrington. "It's a way that I can give back to the photography community while also starting a sustainable business," Larter explains. The current, temporary location offers a large studio which can be rented for $25/hour, including lighting. There is also a small amount of gear for rent. Aperture offers memberships, giving frequent renters a discount. For more information, see the Aperture Studios website at: www.aperturestudios.ca.

The kids are artistic

The Khyber Centre for the Arts is gearing up for another summer of Khyber Kids art camps. This year the aim of the camps is to have kids interact with their community through art. The schedule consists of five one-week camps, each concentrating on a different area of artistic expression: painting, sculpture, performance, puppetry and mixed media. They will combine activities at the Khyber building itself (at 1588 Barrington) as well as field trips to nearby artist workshops. The classes are all limited to eight campers, allowing kids to get plenty of individual attention, and cost $160 per week including healthy snacks each day. The camps will run from July 2 to August 3 and will finish with the annual Khyber Kids art show during the second week of August. For more information call Abby Fry at 223-5829 or visit the website at www.khyberarts.ns.ca.

Sounds divine

CD Heaven in Dartmouth is under new ownership. Candace Redden has taken over the second-hand music shop from Brian Rippen after working for the company for 10 years. "I'll be running the business pretty much as it was," she says, "We'll still carry rock t-shirts and posters and other paraphernalia." Redden does have at least one big plan up her sleeve. "I want to introduce some events," she says, "I'm going to start having in-store shows with visiting bands." CD Heaven can still be found at 118 Wyse Road in the Dartmouth Shopping Centre, online at: www.cdheaven.ca , or by phone at 464-0123.

Bits and bites

The Great Canadian Bagel on Spring Garden Road is closed. A sign on the door thanks customers for their patronage, and lets us know that they are relocating to Bedford. That's a lot of bagels, Bedford...In other Spring Garden news, Timothy's Coffee, just up the street from the bagel emporium, also closed this week...Empire Theatres opens their new 12 screen multiplex at Dartmouth Crossing this Friday. The new theatre replaces the recently-closed Penhorn Mall cinema, and is fully loaded with stadium seating in every theatre, an arcade and all your favourite concessions. Take a gander at Movie Times (page 41) for show times...South End pizza fans may have noticed that Tomasino's has recently changed its name to Tomavino's. The obvious question on everyone's mind is: huh? A quick call to the restaurant reveals that the name change was strictly for franchising reasons. The pizzeria is looking to expand, and the name Tomasino's was already spoken for. Tomavino's is still serving up delicious pizza at 5173 South Street, and can be found online at: www.tomavinos.ca.

Give us the works. Email: shoptalk@thecoast.ca

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