The Antigonish bar breakdown

 

How does your favourite place compare?

 
 

One of the biggest decisions of any weekend is to find a destination to go to after the pre, or after the house party. This decision is typically made based on a wide array of variables, such as location, how late it’s open, likelihood of a crowd, music, or perhaps even food outlet proximity. So to help you out with your next outing, here is a breakdown on all the potential candidates:

 
 
 Front entrance to Piper's Pub. Photo courtesy of Jessica Fullerton.

Front entrance to Piper's Pub. Photo courtesy of Jessica Fullerton.

Piper’s Pub: Lovingly referred to as “the pub”, and located in the dead center of town, this establishment is regularly the most attended. If you’re not a gambling man or woman, then regardless of the week, the odds are if you show up to the pub on a Friday or Saturday there’s a crowd by 12am. Whether it is due to its proximity to both Kenny’s and the Wheel, or you’re the type of person that prefers to let their dance moves do the talking on the largest dance floor in the entire county of Antigonish, or even the fact that it’s just open a whole hour later than the Inn, the Pub is your best bet. It’s also home to some of students’ most beloved theme nights such as: HSDP (High School Dance Party), Country Night and many others.

Small downside to this option is that with the almost guaranteed crowd comes the notorious pub line. It is not for the faint of heart- this line is what weeds out the claustrophobics from the rest of student population. It is also subjected to the harsh weather of Nova Scotia (which is no joke at times), as the lineup is outside.

 Antigonish's Split Crow James Street location. Photo courtesy of Jessica Fullerton.

Antigonish's Split Crow James Street location. Photo courtesy of Jessica Fullerton.

The Split Crow: Conveniently located next to McDonald’s, for those whose late-night snacking leans more towards burgers and fries than pizza, The Split Crow offers another bar option. Like the pub, “Splitties” is open until 2am. Despite rumors surrounding the way the institution is run, the overall Splitties experience is not a bad one.

The layout offers a more conversational experience with its many tables, various levels and smaller dance floor, and let’s be real, for those uninterested in participating in conversation directly just watching the crowd from the top floor steps and saddles is Friday Night entertainment at its finest. Splitties does offer a variety of different theme nights and events like Hawaiian Night and various Trivia Nights. Splitties is perhaps best known for being home to the most Nine Mile River appearances in Antigonish history.

 A balcony view of StFX's Golden X Inn. Photo courtesy of Jessica Fullerton.

A balcony view of StFX's Golden X Inn. Photo courtesy of Jessica Fullerton.

The INN: All roads lead to the INN. This bar is all students, all the time and is located in the very heart of our campus, making its location uber convenient for all on-campus students. Only being open until 1 am doesn’t stop the Inn from owning student’s Wednesday Nights with its Wing Night/Open Mic Night affair. It’s incredibly specific theme nights such as Beyoncé Appreciation Night and the upcoming Sex Toy Bingo offer niche opportunities for students to get “x-cited” about. Another plus is the line is indoors, making the Inn a safe haven during the winter months.

One of the biggest downfalls is perhaps the Inn’s unpredictability. Its specialty events focus can make it difficult for people to judge which nights will draw a crowd, and which nights will require cover. Which is a necessary piece of information for the collective student body to have enough notice to load their wallets and cards with enough to pay for both cover, and the desired amount of whiskey sours.

And in case you missed these other underrated weekend options, here’s an idea of what you’re in for:

 An outside view of the Townhouse. Photo courtesy of Jessica Fullerton

An outside view of the Townhouse. Photo courtesy of Jessica Fullerton

The Townhouse: This little local gem caters to a small crowd of locals, students and regulars in its cozy downtown location. This socially conscious establishment makes its business from offering incredible eats with local produce, specialty craft beer and drinks in a casual laid-back, Irish-style atmosphere. The Townhouse plays host to a variety of live musical guests, with Thursday nights being reserved for the StFX’s music department’s very own students. Its size does make it a little tight for space, especially on busy nights, and its specialty food may not meet the needs of an overly picky eater. But if you’re in the mood for something a little more conversational and relaxed, or for the chance to get to know your professor outside of the classroom, the Townhouse is a valuable alternative.

 Dooly's Antigonish location. Photo courtesy of Jessica Fullerton.

Dooly's Antigonish location. Photo courtesy of Jessica Fullerton.

Dooly’s: Another frequently overlooked option among students is Dooly’s. Popular amongst a handful of regulars, the Dooly’s pool hall offers a different activity to dancing and talking to break the social ice. Its large and open concept layout makes it less cramped than other venues. Its tables and booths give students a place to be able to socialize amongst a group of friends. One downfall is the difficulty for those non-regular students to get a table or booth, however, with no outdoor lineups and plenty of space, the next time the pub line looks too daunting it may be worthwhile to cross the street and check out this option.