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November 6, 2020 - Halifax, Nova Scotia: Downtown Halifax and the Halifax waterfront will come alive with music, light and joy for the first-ever annual Evergreen Festival, November 28-December 20, 2020. Throughout the four-week festival, guests will enjoy a safe, walkable collection of outdoor experiences that invites them to support local businesses and good causes while celebrating the essence of the season.

“A signature holiday event has long been identified as something our destination needs, and Discover Halifax is proud to be part of it,” said Ross Jefferson, president and CEO of the non-profit sales and marketing organization. “As a first-of-its-kind event for Halifax, the Evergreen Festival is launching at a time when our community needs it most.”

A collaboration of stakeholders, partners and sponsors have come together to make the Evergreen Festival an anticipated, sustainable event that meets all current public health guidelines. Develop Nova Scotia is stewarding the event with marketing support from Discover Halifax, with a showcase of incredible Nova Scotia talent and small businesses at the centre.

Develop Nova Scotia’s objective is to co-create a program that extends the tourism season that people can experience in person or digitally from their home, no matter where within or outside of Nova Scotia they live. Building year-over-year, the vision is a robust marketplace of experiences and products that enables businesses to participate from far and wide through digital adoption and engages community here and everywhere to experience the holidays, Nova Scotia style.

“This year, more than ever, it’s imperative to celebrate our diverse culture and help small, local business to reach customers,” said Gordon Stevens, Chief Operating Officer and VP Finance for Develop Nova Scotia. “The Evergreen Festival demonstrates the value of our public spaces year-round, enhancing the quality of life for residents and giving future tourists a reason to visit in the shoulder season and celebrate Nova Scotia as an evergreen destination.”

A variety of charitable organizations as well as business groups, artisans, musicians and entertainers, hotels and restaurants have signed up to be part of the event. The Evergreen Festival has five predominant features to maximize economic opportunities for businesses and appeal to a wide variety of ages and interests.

  • The Evergreen Village along the Halifax waterfront will offer an outdoor market with lights, animations, experiences and programming every Wednesday through Sunday throughout the festival, including:
    • The Evergreen Market, featuring more than 35 Nova Scotia makers, creators and artists in temporary kiosks, as well as existing waterfront businesses and producers. Confirmed vendors include Taste of Nova Scotia, a collective of businesses from Downtown Truro, Queens and Kings Natural Products, Made in Petite collective, BBI – Business is Jammin’ Coop, Ironworks Distillery and many more. Products will be available for sale on site in the open-air waterfront market and through online stores;
    • The Evergreen Stage, hosted by the Jazz East Rising Association, will provide an outdoor entertainment experience like no other featuring a culturally diverse mix of over 60 performances that include music, dance, film and more. Enjoy them for free from many spots on the Halifax Waterfront, or gather your family or bubble friends and ‘chill’ by a cozy fire pit or at a picnic pod, expected to be bookable starting November 13th. Performances run every Wednesday to Sunday during the festival with two great opening night headliners, The Christine Campbell & Blake Johnston Band, followed by The Town Heroes on Saturday, November 28th. Daytime performances include Jody Upshaw, Gizelle De Guzman, The Fare Thee Well, Rankin & The Broken Reeds, Braden Lam, Sarah Ellen Morrison, Mary Beth Carty and more. This programming will also be live-streamed so you can enjoy it on the waterfront, at home, or from many local establishments.
  • Evergreen Bright will set Spring Garden Road, Grand Parade, and surrounding areas aglow each night. The light display will also stretch all along the waterfront from Historic Properties to the Halifax Seaport market and will include the Tunnel of Hope, a light installment collecting donations for the Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia.
  • · The Evergreen Patios, Events and Programming will include a variety of seasonal events like Shopping Under the Stars, the Advocate Forest of Trees, and new favourites like Soups and Sips offered by local restaurants and on patios.
  • · Evergreen Getaways will help guests who want to enjoy the full calendar of events and experiences book overnight packages that supports local hotels and businesses.

Additional Quotes:

“We’re thrilled to bring a Taste of Nova Scotia to festival goers at the inaugural Evergreen Festival. Local businesses need our support more than ever. The Evergreen Festival will provide a unique outdoor holiday market, making it easier for Nova Scotians to support local this holiday season.” - Emily Haynes, Executive Director, Taste of Nova Scotia.

“Jazz East is delighted to curate the Evergreen Stage as part of this exciting new holiday Festival. We have put together a diverse program of cultural entertainment for audiences of all ages showcasing music, dance, film and much more. We applaud our partners at Develop Nova Scotia for introducing this welcome winter celebration.”- Andrea Dawson Thomas, Executive Director, Jazz East Rising Association.

“We know this holiday season has the potential to be even more difficult than most for those who already struggle with mental illness and addiction. The Evergreen Festival and our 150-foot illuminated Tunnel of Hope, brought to you by our friends at Emera & Nova Scotia Power, are sure to add a touch of magic, support, inspiration, and hope for all. We can’t wait to welcome visitors on the Halifax waterfront!”- Starr Cunningham, Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia President & CEO.

To find more information:


About Discover Halifax - Discover Halifax is non-profit, membership-based marketing and sales organization in partnership with the Halifax regional government, the Hotel Association of Nova Scotia and participating industry members. Since its inception in 2002, Discover Halifax’s goal is to promote Halifax as a destination of choice for leisure and business travellers.

About Develop Nova Scotia - Develop Nova Scotia is a Crown Corporation that works with partners and communities to attract people to Nova Scotia to live, work, invest and visit. By investing in infrastructure, properties and programs that build on the compelling natural advantages of the province, Develop Nova Scotia enables strategic economic infrastructure to support inclusive economic growth in Nova Scotia.

Media Contacts:

Monica MacLean, Janine Basha,
Communications Director Manager, Content & Digital Strategy
902-401-2308 902-880-5917