For the animals at the Montreal Ecomuseum, it's business as usual. The zoo in Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue, the only one of its kind on the Island of Montreal, is posting regular updates on its social media pages, showing what its critters are up to while the gates are closed to the public. The photos and videos of animals blissfully unaware of the circumstances that surround them are a welcome escape from the dreary stream of bad news.
The Ecomuseum first closed on March 16 in response to public health recommendations.
It reduced its staff, but the well-being of its animals has remained a top priority, Director General David Rodrigue assured in an April 9 Facebook video.
"Care is still there, so don't worry," he told viewers.
"We will never reduce either the care or well-being of the animals who are our responsibility," he promised.
In a video published on April 17, Chief Veterinarian Dr. Sarah Annie Guenette further explained that the animals are under surveillance by medical staff to ensure their health.
Luckily for Montrealers, personnel are still able to capture some pretty cute images.
"While some of the animals seem to miss the presence of visitors, others seem to be enjoying this calm period," museum Director of Communications, Émilie Sénécal, told MTL Blog.
"They all have their own personality!"
The situation has nonetheless presented financial difficulties for the non-profit organization.
Would-be visitors who want to help out can make a donation through Canada Helps or sign up for the Animal Sponsorship Program, where, according to the museum website, "every dollar received contributes directly to the cost of long-term care of the animals in our care."
While there are a million and one spots to enjoy a 5 à 7 in the city, not everywhere does happy hour quite like this Montreal restaurant in the Village.
Resto Keela serves $6 drinks from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., including house draft beer, house red or white wine, and speed rail mixed drinks, which is a choice of vodka, rye, rum, or gin — a pretty hard drink deal to beat.
As for food, you can go every week and try a different $6 dish at happy hour. "The $6 bites change from week to week but we always offer 3-5 options," owners Kristin Murphy and Johnny Hamilton told MTL Blog.
I went on September 10 and got to try green beans with a cashew romesco sauce and feta crumble, chorizo sausage, chicken Kaarage with kimchi cucumbers, and organic cherry tomato salad with blue cheese. And I kid you not when I say these dishes all take your taste buds on a culinary trip to heaven.
Keela's full menu is also filled with tons of unique dishes for you to try. The celery root carpaccio is hands down my favourite.
Every Friday night, you can hear the sweet voice of Bud Rice sing live at the restaurant.