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Christmas and Boxing Day 2023: What’s open, closed in and around Halifax

As the holiday weekend fast approaches, one festive tradition in a Halifax neighbourhood is in full swing. As Megan King reports, a pair of brothers are lighting up the night – all in the name of charity. – Dec 21, 2023

As the holiday season approaches, many businesses and services in the Halifax area will be closed or operating on reduced hours during Christmas Eve, Christmas, and Boxing Day.

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Here’s a look at what’s open and closed in the city on Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday.

Grocery, pharmacies and liquor stores

All Sobeys, Atlantic Superstore, Costco and Walmart locations will have reduced hours on Sunday, Dec. 24.

Both Sobeys and Atlantic Superstore will stay open between 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Christmas Eve, with Walmart locations operating between 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Costco will open at 8:00 a.m. and close at 5:00 p.m.

All stores will stay closed the following Monday and Tuesday for Christmas and Boxing Day.

All NSLC outlets will remain open on Sunday between 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. but close up shop on Christmas and Boxing Day.

Most pharmacies have reduced hours throughout Sunday to Tuesday, with many being closed for Christmas. The Pharmacy Association of Nova Scotia has a guide to check local HRM pharmacy hours. 

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Private beer and liquor stores may be open with adjusted hours. Check with individual stores.

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Malls

The Halifax Shopping Centre and Mic Mac Mall will be open between 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Christmas Eve, with the Sunnyside Mall in Bedford and the Park Lane Mall in Halifax opening its doors at 12:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m.

All malls, including the Halifax Shopping Centre, Park Lane Mall, Mic Mac Mall and Sunnyside Mall will be closed on Christmas and Boxing Day before returning to varying hours of operation on Wednesday.

Halifax Transit and transportation 

All Halifax Transit and Access-A-Bus services will be operating on reduced holiday hours during Christmas and Boxing Day.

All Halifax ferry services will cease operations on December 25, with the Alderney Ferry resuming and running on a holiday service schedule the following day. There will be no Woodside Ferry on Tuesday.

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The full schedule can be accessed at halifax.ca.

Garbage Collection

In a media release on Friday, the Halifax Regional Municipality there stated there will be no garbage, organics or recyclables collection services on Christmas. Curbside collection that would typically happen on Monday will instead occur on Saturday morning.

“Regular collection services will resume on Tuesday, Dec. 26,” the release said.

Libraries and recreation

All Halifax Public Libraries will be closed on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and Boxing Day.

Many recreational facilities will be operating on irregular schedules beginning on Friday until the New Year, according to the municipality’s release.

“Please call ahead to your local facility in advance to confirm complete holiday operating hours,” the statement continued, adding that contact information is available online.

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The Emera Oval ice skating rink opened to the public on Friday, as a “Skate with Santa” event was hosted earlier in the day. A public skate is scheduled at 4:00 p.m. on Friday afternoon.

Parking

On-street parking will be free throughout the municipality on Monday and Tuesday. Parking Enforcement will resume operations on Wednesday.

Canada Post

Mail collection and delivery are cancelled on Monday and Tuesday, during Christmas and Boxing Day. Post offices will also remain closed on both days.

Customer Contact Centres

The municipality’s 311 contact centre and in-person customer service centres will be closed on Monday and Tuesday, although urgent calls can still be reported. Regular operating hours will resume on Wednesday.

“Customers may still call 311 for urgent requests concerning transportation, municipal operations, facilities, animal services and illegally parked vehicles,” the municipality said.

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