Halifax’s top 10 stories of 2017: Sharks, Mr. Lahey and the Halifax Explosion

Another year is almost over, and 2017 was a big one for Haligonians. It marked the 100th anniversary of the Halifax Explosion and the 150th birthday of Canada as a nation.

Hilton the shark, cellular outages across the region and the death of actor John Dunsworth were some of the biggest newsmakers this year.

Global News has compiled a list of the top stories that were important to Haligonians and Nova Scotians.

Stephen McNeil’s Liberals elected to second straight majority

Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil is embraced by his wife Andrea, daughter Colleen and son Jeffrey as he addresses the crowd at his election-night celebration in Bridgetown, N.S. on Tuesday, May 30, 2017. Andrew Vaughan/The Canadian Press

Our live coverage of this year’s Nova Scotia election was one of the top stories in the province.

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Stephen McNeil’s Liberals won a second straight majority — the first time since 1988 that it’s happened in the province — and Global News brought up to the minute coverage.

The Liberals were elected in 27 ridings, the PCs took home 17 seats, forming the official Opposition, and the NDP took seven.

Trailer Park Boys’ Mr. Lahey dies at 71

The death of John Dunsworth, who portrayed Jim Lahey in the comedy series Trailer Park Boys, drew international attention and condolences from actors around the world.

Aside from his memorable role as Mr. Lahey, Dunsworth had an extensive career in film and television dating back to 1978.

Dunsworth died on Oct. 16 at the age of 71.

The Halifax Explosion killed nearly 2,000 people. This is where most of them lived.

Click to play video: 'Survivors, families remember the Halifax explosion'
Survivors, families remember the Halifax explosion

2017 marked the 100th anniversary of the Halifax Explosion — the largest single loss of life in Canada — and a project that set out to map the dead of the Halifax Explosion drew an audience across the country.

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Global News teamed up with the University of King’s College journalism school to produce the interactive map.

The points on the map correspond to the home addresses given for victims of the Halifax explosion who lived in Halifax and listed in the explosion remembrance book available online from the Nova Scotia Archives.

Halifax’s Timber Lounge owner gives ‘Proud Boys’ the boot

This year saw right-wing group the Proud Boys catch the attention of mainstream Canadian media after members appeared to interrupt an indigenous ceremony on Canada Day.

Halfax’s Timber Lounge experienced the wrath of some of the organization’s members when it ejected a group from the axe-throwing venue.

The Timber Lounge’s Facebook page was flooded with negative reviews from Proud Boys members and their supporters, but owner Marc Chisholm doesn’t regret kicking them out.

“We do everything we can to encourage a safe, positive environment for everyone that walks in there,” Chisholm said.

Hurricane Gert makes waves in Nova Scotia

Hurricanes made headlines throughout the world in 2017, and Nova Scotia was no different.

Although no major storm hit the province, hurricanes did leave their mark on the region.

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Environment Canada issued a special weather statement for Nova Scotia in August that warned of intense waves along the province’s coast.

However, surfers in the region did seem to enjoy the waves.

Big iceberg draws bigger crowds to Newfoundland town

Click to play video: 'Large iceberg visible off the coast of Newfoundland'
Large iceberg visible off the coast of Newfoundland

Icebergs drew massive crowds to a small Newfoundland town in April.

A massive iceberg sitting just offshore of Ferrytown, N.L.  drew crowds to the community — even as it slowly drifted away.

Widespread cellphone outages across Atlantic Canada

It’s a day that won’t soon be forgotten as cellular and other telecom services throughout Atlantic Canada suddenly stopped working on Aug. 4.

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Bell, Koodo, Virgin Mobile and Telus all experienced issues that began in the morning, with reports of service outages in PEI, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Newfoundland.

Although service was eventually restored, it was later discovered that the outages were the result of two major fibre links being cut “by third-party construction work.”

A great white shark made his way to Nova Scotia

Hilton the shark is tagged by OCEARCH researchers. Courtesy of OCEARCH/R. Snow

A massive 600-kg great white shark named Hilton enthralled Nova Scotians for most of the summer.

An electronic tag from research group OCEARCH allowed the entire province to follow along as Hilton appeared near Nova Scotia in August and stuck around the region until early December.

OCEARCH founder Chris Fischer said the shark may have stuck around (despite a few detours) in a bid to find a potential mate, noting: “They should only have one thing on their mind, and that’s making baby sharks.”

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Teen killed in crash in Hammonds Plains, N.S.

The death of a 17-year-old boy from Hammonds Plains was heartbreaking news for the Halifax region in October.

RCMP say the teen was a passenger in the vehicle, which lost control and overturned in a ditch on Rochester Drive.

The victim was a Grade 12 student at Charles P. Allen High School in Bedford.

Closures, cancellations after Nova Scotia blizzard

A blizzard that saw nearly 50 cm of snow blew across Nova Scotia in February.

The massive amount of snow saw many schools closed and long delays in travel throughout the province.

With files from the Canadian Press

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