After announcing on Friday that schools in HRM and Sydney would stay closed through the first phase of the reopening plan, the Rankin government changed course yesterday, and now plans to reopen schools in those communities on June 3.

“Everything is trending in the right direction—cases, testing and vaccine,” Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer of health, says in a press release. “Given how quickly things are improving, it’s safe for children to be back in the classroom where they belong. The in-school experience is vital to a young person’s development and well-being. I’m very happy children will be able to finish out the year with their friends and classmates.”

In the rest of the province, in-person classes are set to resume on June 2. Jake Boudrot has more for The Reporter.

Dr. Robert Strang. Photo: CNS

COVID snapshot
Nova Scotia has 448 known active cases of COVID-19, with 17 new cases (all in the Central Zone) and 74 recoveries reported in the latest government update. There are 40 people in Nova Scotian hospitals with the disease, including 16 in ICU.

As of May 30, health-care workers in the province have dispensed 583,873 doses of COVID-19 vaccine, with 43,463 Nova Scotians getting the second dose that completes immunization.

Man charged in Pictou shooting
A 32-year-old man from New Glasgow faces several charges after an early-morning shooting in Pictou on May 24.

Gary Cameron appeared in court yesterday to answer charges of careless use of a firearm, carrying a concealed weapon, unauthorized possession of a firearm, possession of a firearm knowing its possession is unauthorized, possession of a firearm while prohibited, and failure to comply with release order.

RCMP continue to look for a 26-year-old woman who they say was also involved in the incident.

The Pictou Advocate has details.

Queens County “lucky” to avoid major fire
A small fire near School Street in Milton on May 16 had potential to be much worse, according to local firefighters.

At 11:12 that morning, the Liverpool Fire Department was called to a fire that began with a hay bale and spread into the woods, burning over about half a hectare.

“It was a small fire as it were,” says Fire Captain John Long. “It was just lucky it didn’t happen later in the morning when the wind picked up.”

Kevin McBain reports for LighthouseNow.

Mark Innes. Photo: Tammy Fancy

A hockey treasure trove
It’s probably a good day for Dartmouth hockey fan Mark Innes. Last night, his beloved Montreal Canadiens won a pivotal game seven, eliminating their arch rival Toronto Maple Leafs from the Stanley Cup playoffs.

Innes has loved Les Habs through thick and thin, over the years assembling a remarkable collection of hockey memorabilia that fills his basement—cards, sweaters, games, and much more.

It started with a single autograph. “I didn’t set out to be a collector,” he says. it just morphed into that … It’s my way of honouring the game.”

He tells Tammy Fancy about it in this Halifax Magazine story, originally published December 2018.

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Halifax Magazine