Haviah Mighty's 5 Favourite Places in Brampton

The latest Polaris Prize winner opens up about her favourite hometown hangouts
Haviah Mighty's 5 Favourite Places in Brampton
Photo: Jennifer Hyc
Haviah Mighty became the first rap artist to win the Polaris Music Prize when her 2019 album, 13th Floor, took home the prize for best Canadian album on September 16. The member of rap collective the Sorority shared some of her favourite spots in her Brampton hometown. Location photos by Tse Daniel.

Copper Branch (48 Peel Ctr. Dr.)

It can be difficult to find on-the-go options with my dietary restrictions (vegetarian/gluten free/lactose intolerant), so it's always nice to stumble upon healthy quick options, and know they're available to me when cooking or meal prep just isn't an option. Not to mention, it's the fast food experience with food that doesn't feel "fast."

Keikyz Hair Studio (10069 Hurontario St. #4)

Finding a loctician isn't easy — that's somebody who specializes in treating and styling hair that is loc'd (some people call them dreadlocks, but that's incorrect). I have locs. People mistake them for braids, or weave, but my natural hair is maintained through an interlocking technique that my mom started and maintained for years. I now keep my hair styled and upkept with my girl Nash at her hair studio. I find I do at least two styles a month, and Nash and I always come up with new, unique styles together. I love working with a talented, creative hairstylist who understands my hair, because it's so rare. Fun fact: Nash styled my hair on the cover of 13th Floor.

Long & McQuade Brampton (12 Vodden St. E.)

Ah, a home away from home! Aside from the fact that I was employed at Long & McQuade Brampton for almost four years, and know all the staff and management like family, I also just love this place and what it represents for the community. A hub for all your musical needs, Long & McQuade is an escape for any creative. You can play the instruments on the floor, rent them and take them home, or take lessons to properly learn an instrument. It's heaven for somebody like me, and an access point for the resources every musician needs. It's also a dope hangout spot — I like popping by, saying hello to old friends, and forming into clusters on the sales floor while discussing "distortion" with other ridiculous people. Always a good time!

Garden Square (12 Main St. N.)

Garden Square is a really nice gathering hub that feels central to the downtown Brampton core. They host shows and events there, many of which I've played, from hour long headline sets, to playing in Garden Square for the halftime the night the Raptors won the championship! It's super chill in the summer, and there's little quaint pathways behind some of the shops, as well as the beautiful Gage Park nearby. I find this general area makes for lovely summer walks!

Cassie Campbell Community Centre (1050 Sandalwood Pkwy W.)

Cassie Campbell is a community centre that offers programs and drop-in sessions for learning to play badminton, basketball, painting, drawing, or lifeguard training. It's multi-purpose, and encompasses so many other types of sessions. There's a gym inside and hoops out back. I remember when Cassie Campbell first opened, and my sister Omega got the job through a job fair at her school. I tried, for years, to get a job there too. It never happened, but life worked itself out!