Our entirely objective list includes the province’s most influential standouts of 2014, ranked from 5th to the No. 1 all-star of New Brunswick.
5. Rothesay Mayor Bill Bishop: Aging Mayor Bill Bishop took a stand in July of this year against the Funky Monkey Sandwich Stop, a mobile food vendor that attempted to set up in a town where change “is not a welcome word.” This brave mayor fought tooth and nail against innovation and fun food, in a valiant effort to protect the beloved people who voted for him from new tastes and sights. “You have to know Rothesay, it is not your regular community,” Bishop said. We clearly don’t know Rothesay like he does, but at The Manatee, we’re willing to take his word for it. Keep fighting the good fight, Bishop.
4. Hurricane Arthur: Arthur was undoubtedly the force to be reckoned with across the entire province this year. Bringing all of NB Power to its knees, with gale winds and fallen trees, he managed to black out much of New Brunswick for a record amount of time, becoming NB’s unofficial bad-boy. In the fight between New Brunswick and Arthur, he was the clear winner and therefore earned himself a spot on The Manatee‘s Power List.
3. ‘Poem for a Penny’ guy: You may not know his name, but you know his game. He’s been a Fredericton staple for ages, but this year he’s really upped his game, earning him a spot on The Manatee’s Power List. Since the penny was rendered obsolete and is increasingly hard to find in the Picture Province, ‘Poem for a Penny’ guy has expanded his services to include jokes for a smoke. On any street corner in downtown Fredericton you can find him offering passersby a simple and often nonsensical poem for any coin, and now an equally nonsensical joke for the small cost of one cigarette. Keep it up, guy.
2. Charles LeBlanc: One of the province’s most controversial figures, blogger Charles LeBlanc covers everything from politics to social issues with clarity and objectivity. He accurately criticized the police, politicians and government officials on his blog, and was not afraid to protest a ticket he got for riding his bike on the sidewalk. LeBlanc’s bullhorn skills are unparalleled, and he didn’t hesitate to hone them when he was banned from the grounds of the legislature for being too real and honest. Though LeBlanc’s blog, charlesotherpersonality.blogspot.ca, was shut down by the police for libel, The Manatee still thinks he’s pretty cool. Bad press is still press, right?
1. Brian Gallant: You can’t go anywhere in this province without hearing the name Brian Gallant. Best known for his chiselled facial features, flawless blonde hair and steely blue eyes, Gallant made a splash this year when he was spotted at the YMCA in Fredericton sporting a red Spandex athletic shirt. “He was really buff — I couldn’t believe it,” stated an unnamed observer in obvious awe. “He looked like he was really in the zone, and somehow managed to make Spandex look manly.” For being so swoon-worthy, Gallant gets The Manatee‘s No. 1 spot in this year’s Power List.