Letters From Moose Jaw, SK

by Dustan Hlady

New zine contributor Dustan Hlady sent us an indie map for his hometown of Moose Jaw, SK. We don’t run the indie map feature any more, but Dustan’s piece was so good we had to run it in the mag. Enjoy!

Citizens come and go from the in Moose Jaw Public Library on April 7, 2017. —
(Crystal Schick/Times-Herald)

Hey I thought that I would submit my city for the indie scene thingy that I always enjoy so much in BP. Moose Jaw is a small city but we have an incredible arts scene. 

  1. Bobby’s Place

Bobby’s Sunday night gigs are legendary. Local, independent and touring bands play the Irish style pub. The pub showcases everything from rap to metal. There is also an after show tradition where whoever is still around at last call, holds hands in a circle and says “We may never all be together again.” The pub is showcased in Highwind’s music video for Hey, Is That Moby?.

  1. Common Cafe and Bakery

Touring bands have been stopping in the cafe for decades. All of their baked goods are made in shop and the coffee is coffee snob approved. It’s a hipster hangout, but even more than that, it is accepting of everyone no matter who you are. Proof of this can be found at their monthly open mike that can have you go from awe of talent to cringing in your seat in a matter of minutes.

  1. Chiller’s Brewhouse

Chiller’s is an interesting mix of artistic people using the bar as a music venue and a group of characters that look like the cast of Duck Dynasty (except less teeth). The bar, you might say is an artistic battlefield where both groups compete for the space. You might hear heckling (to and from the stage) and if you’re lucky, a fight. They have music shows once a week and an open jam every Sunday night. There is a microbrewery on site. Their Christmas and Halloween rock shows are among some of the wildest nights you can have in the city.

  1. Vintage Vinyl

A record store with a massive collection of used records, CDs and band merch. It’s also just a nice place to stop by and talk music. There is a weed paraphernalia shop in the back.

  1. Bloodline Tattoo

Bloodline is arguably the best tattoo parlor in the province. They specialize in custom tattoos. Their work is featured in the Megan Nash music video Deer Head

  1. Moose Jaw Public Library and Art Gallery

The beautiful historic building hosts varies artistic events, from art classes/openings, lectures and musical events. They’re super involved in the community, including a recent pilot project this winter centering Indigenous women who are victims of domestic violence, and providing access to arts workshops and resources. It is also the venue for Canada’s Premier literary festival Saskatchewan Festival of Words. Yann Martel is a guest this year. Past guests include Margaret Atwood, Miriam Toews and pretty much any Canadian writer you’ve ever heard of.