Author Archives: Daniel Selicaro

A City on the Thaw

By Freeman Fletcher (FILM ’18)

Keanu Reeves, star of John Wick 2, shocked to find out that he is indeed Canadian. (Courtesy: dlisted.com)

The other night, I went to see John Wick: Chapter 2, the sequel to one of the better Hollywood action offerings of the last decade. The sequel is even better. My feelings towards the film aside, one of the most magical experiences I’ve ever had at a movie theater unfurled before my eyes. There is a scene when the titular Wick (Keanu Reeves,  a native Canadian) is beset upon by a female assassin who moonlights as a street violinist. It’s a lot cooler in the movie.

What follows is a good, fun, neck-snappy brawl in a cool, colorful, stylish hallway; lots of back-lighting and changing LEDs. But you know what the best part is? I LIVE WITHIN WALKING DISTANCE OF IT. Yeah, the scene is SUPPOSED to be set in New York but it was shot in Montreal’s very own Place des Arts, a block away from where our student residence!

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City of Lights

By Laura Reilly (EGPR ’18)

It’s a great year to be studying abroad in Montréal! 2017 marks the city’s 375th anniversary, which means there are celebrations everywhere! Montreal en Lumiere is a two week long festival that takes place all over Montreal each year, from live performances to a 3.6 kilometer route of illuminated artwork starting from the heart of the Quartier des Spectacles. Montreal does an amazing job incorporating interactive art with the city, and the best part is that you can experience the celebration barely a block away from Champlain’s residences!

Some key facts about Montréal en Lumière, Nuit Blanche à Montréal:

  • Over 600 artists
  • 300 activities and shows
  • 13 countries represented
  • ~1,000 projectors
  • 2600 kg of cheese!!!!!

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Greenhouse on the Roof

By Halee Bernier (BUSA ’18)

As our fifth week in wintry Montreal came to an end, we escaped the cold during our Friday morning Environmental Earth science class and visited the Concordia Greenhouse. Just a short metro ride away, and located at Montreal’s second-largest English-language university, it is one of the only rooftop greenhouses in Montreal. The greenhouse creates a very warm and relaxing environment making it the perfect place for students to study and work on homework.

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Making the Most of MIGS

By Maina Chen (PWRT ’18)

A section of Ubisoft’s booth, featuring a VR glimpse into Watch Dogs 2.

For gamers coming up to Montreal in the Fall, one of the most talked about events other than the weekly game company visits, deals with prepping for the Montreal International Game Summit; classes are shuffled around and professors reschedule to accommodate. Titled MIGS for short, for three days in mid-November, MIGS is a gathering place for anyone interested in the game industry. With people appearing from Hibernum, EA, PlayStation VR, Microsoft, Playtika, Frima, Ubisoft, WB Games Montreal, Eidos Montreal, Ludia, and a bunch of indies; MIGS is open to those looking for future jobs.

In fact, they’re marketed not only to those already in the industry, but students like us who want to try stepping foot in that door. The price of the tickets is daunting, but with the Super Early Bird discounts, the price can be cut down 20 percent, and even more so for Student passes. I’ve had the pleasure of attending and have some words of advice to anyone looking forward to the 2017 edition.

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Nature’s Path

By Spencer Pearson (BRSM ’18)

As part of our weekly labs in the Earth Science class here in Montreal, there are a number of ‘excursions’ to various sites throughout the city that help students better understand some of the concepts taught in class. This past Friday, we spent our morning exploring the Redpath Museum and all of its little intricacies. The Redpath Museum is a natural history museum located the center of the McGill University campus, and has been around for a number of years, cementing itself as a Montreal institution.

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On Ice – Skating Mount Royal

By Laura Reilly (EGPR ’18)

Laura demonstrating her slightly-better-than-average skating abilities. (Photo: Silas Baker)

Back in Burlington, receiving Facebook invites for RA events as a Junior isn’t as exciting as they were in the first year of college. Admittedly, while making paper cranes in the common room with some friends is stress relieving, it isn’t exactly something you’d look forward to all week (or maybe it is, if you’re really devoted to paper cranes). In Montreal, those Facebook invites are something to get excited about. From the pub crawl during Orientation Weekend to traveling to the top of Mont Royal, the RA’s and staff here have got it down. In such a busy city with so much to do, how can you pass up any opportunity?

Last weekend our RA’s Matt, Haley, and Natalie brought us up to Mont Royal Park, where the group Les amis de la montagne (The Friends of the Mountain) offers any winter activity you can think of. From snowshoeing or cross country skiing to ice skating, rentals for equipment is affordable and the park is open all day!

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Chilly Romance in Montreal

By Freeman Fletcher (FILM ’18)

Old Montreal in the winter: still charming (Sammi Vashaw)

Last weekend, my girlfriend (yeah, you and me both) came up to visit Montreal for the first time. Given that I myself am experiencing this city with relatively fresh eyes, the prospect of designing a weekend filled with exploration, discovery, and romance was a daunting one. Thankfully, I had the city to help me out.

Montreal is vast and diverse. I’m talkin’ “Douglas Adams’ brain on hallucinogens” vast and diverse here. And it can get cold. I’m talkin’ “need a tauntaun’s stomach to survive the night” cold. At least, that’s the case in the winter. These are two speed bumps when it comes to wandering around a city (especially, as my shrink keeps trying to tell me, because apparently tauntauns “don’t exist”…).

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Environmental Architecture

by Mauro Agnellini (MCRM ’18)

It wasn’t instantly evident how a SCI 155 outing to the Canadian Centre for Architecture would be related to global environmental earth science. When mentioning an architecture museum, I imagine most people think about the style of buildings, their historical background and the endeavors of the architect. However, we quickly found out that this wasn’t an ordinary architecture museum . . . if anything, this museum highlights how humans seem to be the architects of their own demise.

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The Lynx Have a Box!

By Donny LaPlume (GDES ’18)

A lynx stuffs itself into its “home” at the Montreal Biodome (Donny LaPlume)

Hello Universe,

I am writing on behalf of the Global Environment Earth Science Lab (what a name). We went to the Montreal Biodome and I cannot stress how adorable a lynx with a box is!

Like seriously look at that. It is a wild animal, climbing into a box. Everything you think you know about cats is flippin’ right!

But in all seriousness the Biodome is a fantastic place. There were 4 different exhibits we got see in our time there. An Amazon environment, one themed on the forests of North America, The Gulf of Saint Lawrence, and the Arctic.

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Dining in the Dark

By Laura Reilly (EGPR ’18)

Laura’s suitemates at O Noir before entering the culinary void (Laura Reilly)

Montreal is well known for its food culture and exotic restaurants. Over the weekend my suitemates and I decided to check out O Noir, a restaurant ten minutes away from the residences. What’s cool about O Noir is that the eating experience is completely in the dark where the wait staff are seeing impaired. If you’ve ever duct taped shut your eyes and tried to eat dinner, you’re almost halfway there!

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