Closed for the 2020 season

Thank you so much for supporting us! See you in 2021

Check out our social media to see if we're up to anything else in the off season

The Lockside Canteen at Shubie Park

We aim to use all local products and ingredients, from Halifax's signature fair trade and organic loose leaf tea provider World Tea House to local farms like Noggins Corner Farm, Off Beet Farm, Hodgepodge Farm, and Martock Glen / Oulton Farms.

Approximately 90% of our packaging is biodegradable and 70% is green-bin compostable. For more details check out our FAQ at the bottom of this page.

We are gluten free and regularly have vegan, vegetarian, and dairy free options. More dietary info in our FAQ.


Click below to see this weekend's menu and pre-order online so your food will be ready shortly after you arrive. We sell out fast, particularly on weekends, so it's strongly recommended to order ahead. You'll have the option to select a pick-up time during the final checkout process.

We take cash, card (TAP ONLY), and apple pay. prices include HST.



Our usual season is from mid-May to mid-October. If we'll be closed unexpectedly or for weather, we will post on socials either the night before, or morning of. If it's unclear, simply email us or send a tweet to confirm!

2020 Rain Policy: we are now open on rainy days when it is considered anything less than heavy rain. We will open at noon and remain open as long as we have orders to fulfill. It’s recommended to order online to reserve your food and pick up time!

 We're rated 5/5 stars – based on 50 opinions on Facebook!
You can review us on:


We're next to the Fairbanks Centre Museum in Shubie Park at 54 Locks Rd. Dartmouth.

Driving? From Downtown Dartmouth, take Ochterloney St to Prince Albert Road and keep going straight. Take the left fork when you see Superstore ahead. Head North/East on the Waverley Road towards Fall River and follow the blue signs with the keys on ’em.

Biking? Simply follow the canal! There's beautiful trails along Sullivan's Pond, Banook Lake, Lake Mic Mac, and through the "Deep Cut" that connects Mic Mac to Lake Charles. For you history buffs, we're right beside lock 3, between the dog park and campground beach.

Taking Transit? Ask for a transfer!

Take any bus that gets you to the Dartmouth Bridge Terminal (#1/#10), then transfer to bus #55. OR ferry to Dartmouth, hop Bus #54, then transfer at Mic Mac Mall to bus #55. Get off when you see Montebello Road, then walk 7 minutes down Locks Rd. 



  • Our taco menu is now back, but simplified! Order ahead online for the best chance at snagging them, quantities are limited each day.
  • You can order drinks, treats, and food items at the window or online by clicking the "ORDER ONLINE!" button above.
  • Trunk drop pickup via text message is available and great for those who still don't wish to be close to other people. (It's also great for take-out on rainy days!)
  • Online orders can be completed with all major credit cards, visa/mc gift cards, visa debit, debit mastercard, Apple Pay, Google Pay, or Lemon Dogs eGift Cards. If your debit card has a VISA or MC logo on it, it will work, however Interac-only branded cards will not. If your card only has the Interac logo, it will only work for window orders.
  • Because our kitchen is tiny, physical distancing is not possible so only minimal staff can safely work for the 2020 season. To minimize your wait, we encourage you to take advantage of online ordering.
  • 2020 Rain Policy: we are now open on rainy days when we have pre-orders and it is considered anything less than heavy rain. We will open at noon and remain open as long as we have orders to fulfill. It’s recommended to order online to reserve your food and pick up time! (Online ordering will be disabled on any rainy days where we remain closed)
  • For window orders, markings are in place to encourage physical distancing while lining up.
  • Tap payment, including Apple Pay, is available at the window. Our tap device is wireless so our staff don't have to be near you to complete payment. If you don’t have tap, you can still order online. You will find tap payments to be more reliable and more secure when using your phone. We strongly recommend adding your payment cards to your phone.
  • We accept cash at the window wearing gloves, with a cash-drop tray.
  • If you wish to eat at Shubie, picnic tables are available, however we recommend bringing a blanket for a picnic instead!


If you encounter any problems with our online ordering system, please let us know

Ordering take-out is generally considered safe as per this article from Serious Eats.

Shubie COMMUNITY Garden

With help from the local community via our GoFundMe campaign, the Shubenacadie Canal Commission and local government, in the spring of 2018, we built a community garden surrounding the patio at Shubie Park!

In 2020 the garden layout was revised to have five 4' x 5' plots for community use along with a plot for us to grow some of the foods found on our menu.

We also equipped the patio with built in shade, lighting for evening events and bench seating, all to make the patio space at Shubie Park more inviting and cozy.

If you’re interested in growing your own fruits and veggies in one of the plots in the future, send us an email to be added to our waitlist for next year.


Even though the build is complete, you can still support the garden project! Simply click the button to be taken to our GoFundMe campaign where you can donate to the ongoing maintenance of the garden and take advantage of our perks!


We used to vend at markets with various changing flavours of lemonade made with freshly pressed lemon by the cup or by the 750mL glass swing-top bottle. We also had our seasonally flavoured freezies and ice pops available through spring summer and fall.

Things got pretty busy at Shubie over the years, and so we no longer vend at markets, however we still obtain most of our fresh local ingredients from Alderney Market!

If you've visited us at markets like Alderney or the Halifax Forum in the past, we'd love to see you at The Lockside Canteen for a bottle refill and to get your freezie/popsicle fix! Plus you can try our tacos while you're there 🙂


{COVID-19 UPDATE: we're not sure how this will affect events this year, but presumably there won't be many! We'll update if there are any events we'll be participating in this year.}

Don’t be surprised if you see us set up at your favourite event, slinging freshly pressed lemonade and refreshing ice pops. Regardless of where we pop up, everything will always be made on the spot so you know you’re getting the best possible treat.

Keep an eye out for us at events all across NS, such as Hal-Con, DCAF, Dartmouth Makers, Halifax Crafters, Switch Open Street Sundays.

We’ll do our best to keep Facebook updated with our current list of events, so check over there often!

Say Hello!

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Common Questions

Who are you guys?

Hey! We're Krista and Jordan, owners of Lemon Dogs. We're helped by our small team of seasonal hires and two returning regular staff: Zabrina Prescott is invaluable at both the canteen and events, and Steve Crane takes care of most of our wholesale.

Krista Leger runs the show. She's the chef behind everything that goes on our menus, at markets, events, pop-ups, and at the Lockside Canteen. Krista was born in Ontario, raised in South Florida, and moved back to Canada in 2012. She's been cooking since she was a kid, but ended up obtaining a degree in photography. She did the freelance thing for a while, but ultimately decided it wasn't fulfilling enough.

For fun, in 2013, she started up a lemonade stand at Alderney Landing on the weekends. The reception was warm enough that within a couple of years it became her full time 3-season gig.

Jordan Schelew was born and raised in Dartmouth, has a degree in Computer Science, and experience building small businesses from the ground up with very little start-up funding. When not helping to make tacos and lemonade he can be found working on websites and tweaking web server engine technology.

Since 2014 Krista and Jordan have lived in and travelled throughout Mexico and other countries, often visiting areas with a rich food (and specifically street-food) culture. These trips have helped shape how Krista cooks and works with flavour combinations.

They also used these trips to bring back necessary ingredients that are hard to find in Halifax, like Mexican herbs and chiles that are unique to each region. For example, Oaxaca alone must have at least a dozen chiles found uniquely in that region. You'll find rows of jars of these ingredients across the back wall of our Canteen.

What's a "Lemon Dog"?

It's simply our name! And no, that doesn't mean we sell hot dogs made from lemons... 

The original idea was for the company to sell lemonade and gourmet hot dogs. Due to the complications of preparing food on-site at markets, it took a couple of years before we added hot dogs to the mix and, in 2016, we launched our first season at the Lockside Canteen in Shubie Park with gourmet dogs.

In 2017 we transitioned to authentic Mexican style tacos. Gourmet hot dogs had started to become all the rage by the end of 2016 and a number of places started selling them. Plus hot dogs were never Krista's food making preference: she has long preferred authentic Asian inspired dishes and Mexican!

Halifax already had a few authentic Asian restaurants and we realized that the lack of authentic street-style Mexican tacos in Halifax was something we could help with.

With the combination of Krista's past experience in preparing Mexican foods and our ability to obtain recipes and ingredients while staying in Mexico for a month or two each winter, thanks to Jordan's Mom having lived there for over 15 years, the 2017 taco season started our foray into Mexican street food.

Why don't you have a year-round restaurant?

We've had our opportunities to do this, but so far we're quite set on being seasonal only. 

We can't easily obtain all of the ingredients locally that we require to make our tacos taste like the real thing that you'll find in Mexico, so we go to Mexico to get them!

There's dozens of different types of tacos served throughout the various regions of Mexico; both tasting and learning how to make  them requires spending time in Mexico.

We've even learned how to make our corn tortillas in at least three subtly different styles, which we occasionally make use of depending on the type of taco served. Without spending sufficient time in Mexico each winter, these are details we would have surely missed!

It's doubtful we'd be able to run a year-round restaurant and leave for multiple months at a time without requiring it be a much larger operation; probably at least 4-5x the size. 

Plus it's nice to take a break and get back in the swing of things feeling refreshed each spring.

Are you environmentally friendly? What related practices do you engage in?

We try to be as environmentally friendly as we can be. It's been a core principle of Lemon Dogs since its very beginning in 2013 when we started with bio-plastic cups and paper straws.

Our goal is to make all of our packaging environmentally friendly, but not everything is available in such a form. Here's a breakdown:


  • Paper plates and 'boats'
  • Paper take-out containers
  • Paper bowls
  • Paper hot cups
  • Paper straws
  • Peach paper liners (replaced checked wax paper in 2020)


  • Hot cup plastic lids
  • Plastic portion cups used for salsas in take-home kits, and for cheese sauce in our 'chips and queso'

Garbage / Plastics

  • Plastic freezie and ice pop wrappers
  • Bio-plastic* bowl lids (marked 'eco')
  • Bio-plastic* cold cups and lids


  • Take-Home Bottles: 750ml recycled glass bottles used for take-home lemonade. A $3 deposit is included in your first purchase ($13) making bottle swaps/refills just $10.
  • Water & Bottles: We do not sell bottles of water at the canteen because some portion of them would likely end up in the park and biodegradable plastics are better off in the park long-term than the plastics used to make water bottles. If you bring your own bottle, we'll gladly fill it for free! We are a Tap Refill Station. If you don't have a re-usable cup, we charge a small fee (less than half the cost of a bottle of water) to cover the cost of the cup, lid, and straw, and we welcome you to bring it back for free refills.
  • Reusable Cups/Mugs: To further incentivize that our customers bring their own cups or mugs, we provide a discount for those that bring their own cup or mug. This discount extends to those that re-use any bio-plastic cups from drinks they've purchased from us.

Local Ingredients

By using local ingredients whenever possible, we reduce the amount of carbon dioxide pumped into our atmosphere through the act of shipping products.

* Bio Plastics are biodegradable, but they must be tossed in the garbage. They are typically made of corn or legume by-products and most are certified to decompose at least 80% of their structure within 1 year in optimal aerobic composting facilities.

Halifax's waste management facilities only handle short-term composting. They've told us that they aim to turn their compost into usable garden materials in under 6 months. Since these plastics take longer than that to degrade and the city does not have facilities to force them to biodegrade faster, they must be tossed in the garbage. 

In the garbage, bio plastics will still biodegrade, but will likely take longer since the conditions will be less-optimal than with other materials typically found in composts.

Why don't you sell or have _____ at the canteen?

Below is a list of things we are regularly asked about. No matter the item, keep the following principles in mind:

  1. We have very limited space in the canteen and we have chosen to use the space available to us to store the items necessary to make the foods that we do best.
  2. We try to have environmentally friendly foods and packaging wherever possible
  3. We do our best to use only whole or natural ingredients and products from local suppliers.
  4. We try to be comparatively healthy. Check the answer to "Are your products healthy?" to understand what we mean by this.

We don't have:

  • Pop/Soda: breaks principle 1 and 3.
  • French Fries: breaks principle 1 (and 3 unless we were to cut the fries ourselves). Additionally we only have a very small portable fryer that we use outside only for occasional fried fish tacos and making crispy tortilla chips.
  • Ice Cream: breaks principle 1 - ice cream takes up a huge amount of space and innefficiently at that (those round tubs). We had cones and cups during our first season at Shubie in 2016, however we regularly received criticism on our pricing. It's not feasible to compete with scoop shops on pricing since most of them are non-profit and making money isn't necessary for them like it is for us. More importantly we have a very old freezer from the '60s that, during the hotest days, doesn't keep ice cream as firm as it should be. As a result of this we opted to focus on the products we do really well instead, like hand-made popsicles and our signature ice cream lemonade floats!
  • Hot Dogs: breaks principles 1 and 4. If given the choice between storing hot dogs and buns and the raw ingredients to make great tacos, we'll always pick the latter! That said, we do have a Canada Day Outdoor BBQ on our patio where we sell Sonora Dogs. Keep an eye out for it!
  • Sour Cream: we don't have sour cream because it's not actually found in most Mexican food (don't even get us started on the "Mexican" aisle of most grocery stores around here). In Mexico, you will find Crema, which is more like Crème Fraîche than Sour Cream. Some say they're all kinda the same, but we disagree. Sometimes we'll have our house-made Mexican crema, but it's not always on-hand.
  • TexMex or Mexican Fusion: we love some good TexMex or Mexican Fusion on occasion, but it's just not what we do. There's plenty of places around town offering these options. We decided to offer something different from the usual in Halifax, and that's what we're sticking to.
Are your products healthy?

No. Our lemonade and frozen treats contain sugar, and our tacos often contain meats with decent fat content (that's part of what makes them so tasty!)

But we do think they're comparatively healthier, meaning that much of our products are likely to be healthier or have more value for your body than similar products you can buy at the store due to likely less sugar content, less preservatives, and/or the use of the freshest produce.

Please note that we haven't done the necessary testing to verify this: we are only making well-informed assumptions.

Here's a few examples:

  1. Most of our popsicles and freezies are made from sugar and real fruit, much of which is purchased from Alderney Market. We believe these items are likely to be healthier for you than a box of store-bought freezies that typically contain sugar, water, artificial flavours and colouring, along with a bunch of preservatives.
  2. Our lemonade is made at what we believe to be the perfect balance between sweet and tart. Because store-bought lemonade typically tastes very sweet, we believe that our preservative-free and more tart lemonade likely contains less sugar.
  3. Since we don't use store bought salsas or tortillas, the majority of our food is preservative free. While there's no evidence proving that most commonly used preservatives are a problem for our health, many people make a conscious effort to avoid them. We avoid preservatives because we think they shouldn't be necessary: a restaurant should be able to go through their stock of food supplies well within their normal expiration periods.

We strive to make as much as we can from local ingredients rather than packaged items. From our hand-pressed made on the spot corn tortillas to our freezies and popsicles, to our hand-pressed lemonades.

White sugar is used in...

  1. Our frozen treats to obtain the best possible consistency. Sugar reduces the size of ice crystals, which is pretty handy!
  2. Our lemonades because of the way the sweet flavour binds with the tart from the lemons. When we use Stevia (an option at our Canteen), the sweet and tart flavours tend to occur separately on the tongue, resulting in a strong sour sensation followed by a strong sweet sensation. Although Stevia is definitely a great alternative to Sugar for those that require it, we find this lack of flavour binding to be less preferrable.
I have allergies or dietary preferences. Do your products contain _______?

Please check with us before placing your order and we can tell you if and when we have used any given allergen. Here's some general rules of thumb:

Gluten: As of May 2019 we do not knowingly use any products that contain gluten. Many of our ingredients are purchased in Mexico where allergen labels are not always available.

Seeds & Nuts: We regularly use seeds and nuts at the canteen as they are common in Mexican fare, with seeds being more common than nuts. Since we make just about everything on our menu, you can ask us for details on whatever you'd like to eat.

Dairy & Eggs: We regularly use dairy and eggs at the canteen. For those with less severe allergies, these items can be omitted from most products we sell. Many of our products are already cream and milk free, and we usually have Oat Milk on hand for coffee and tea.

Vegan/Vegetarian: We always have at least one vegan taco available on our menu and most of our vegetarian options can be made vegan. Most popsicles, freezies, and lemonades are vegan.

We do what we can to separate vegan items from meat, however please keepin mind that we have a very small cooking surface and it's possible that contact could occur.

Is there a wait for food at the Lockside Canteen?

Sometimes! A beautiful sunny weekend often means a lot of people at the park. Since our products are hand-made and cooked to order, when it gets busy, the wait gets longer.

For window orders:

  • On your average weekday drinks are ready within 5 minutes and tacos in about 10.
  • On a busy weekend, drinks can take 10-15 minutes and tacos 15-25 minutes.

As of 2020 you can now simply order online and come to pick up your order when it's ready! No need to wait around. If you don't like lines or (understandably) don't want to line-up with the threat of COVID-19 around us, you don't have to!

We think it's pretty solid that we can have everything prepared in roughly the same amount of time as your average non-fast-food restaurant, despite making everything by hand and being a tiny fraction of the size.

We do our best to monitor our food preparation times in order to keep them within our personal 20 minute goal, and in the event there is a wait we hope that, as many of our customers have indicated for themselves, you'll find that the food is worth it.

Did you know that, in Mexico, tiny road-side taquerias are everywhere and people often wait in long lines, often for 30-45 minutes or longer, for the best tacos in town?

How are you connected to the Canal Commission and Boat Rentals?

Good question! 

Shubie Canal Commission

We rent our canteen space and patio from the Shubenacadie Canal Commission, who have been truly excellent to work with. They've allowed us the freedom to grow the canteen, patio, and helped to fund the Shubie community garden. If you've enjoyed Shubie Park, or any part of the Canal system, please consider supporting them by purchasing some of their wares or sending a donation. You can do that on their website here.

If you haven't been in to the Fairbanks Centre (that bigger building behind us!) to check out the museum or see the working demonstration of the locks, we recommend you do so! The canal has a fantastic history, starting with its many hundreds of years as a trade route for first nations (primaryily Mi'kmaq), to the incredible feat of newcomers when they set out to widen, deepen, and extend the system to ensure boats can pass from the harbour to the other side of the province.

Boat Rentals

We are not affiliated with the company that offers boat rentals at Shubie, but we're certainly grateful to share a location with them, after all, what could be a better afternoon than spending it eating tacos and paddling on a beautiful sunny day?

The boat rental company has changed hands a few times since we started at Shubie and, as of 2019, boat rentals are run by Flex Water Sports. Regardless of the company, details and contact info are always kept up to date on the Shubenacadie Canal website.

Who's that white fluffy dog that hangs out at the canteen?!

This is likely our most frequently asked question! Her name is Charlie and it is believed that she's a Samoyed Husky mix. Krista rescued her as a puppy in Florida 11 years ago (as of May 2019).

Some notes about Charlie:

  1. Heat: when our weather apps accurately predict the hottest days outside, we leave her at home in the air conditioning. When she is with us and it appears too hot outside, we take her for a dip in the canal to cool off. Her white fur does not attract the sun like darker fur does, and her undercoat helps to insulate her from the heat, much as it insulates from the cold in the winter.
  2. Petting: Charlie is very friendly and would surely love your pets! That said she has her quirks as she gets older. If you have a puppy with you, Charlie can get overwhelmed with their exhuberance. Please be mindful of this. If you have a young child with you, please ensure an adult is present at all times. Charlie is typically great with older children that are mindful and frequently around dogs. Please use your judgement.
  3. Other Dogs: Charlie is, in general, great around other dogs. She grew up with teacup sized dogs and a chihuahua, and frequently plays with cats, so she is excellent with small creatures. Charlie also loves huskies and samoyeds, but for unknown reasons is not that fond of golden retrievers and german shepherds.
  4. Talkative: As she's got both husky and samoyed in her, she can be very talkative; it doesn't always mean she needs something.
  5. Food: You may share small quantities of dog-friendly(ish) foods or dog treats with her, but please do not feel obligated to do so. She is well fed, despite the pleading-sounding noises she often makes! She absolutely loves freezies and popsicles (minimal quantities is best due to sugar content), many veggies, and of course meat.