Festival celebrates Thunder Bay's walkability

From walking groups to walking routes, Thunder Bay's walkability was celebrated on Sunday.

The WALKstock festival ran Sunday; organizers hope it will be an annual event

Nancy Angus, coordinator of Sunday's WALKstock festival of walking, hopes it will become an annual event. (CBC News)

From walking groups to walking routes, Thunder Bay's walkability was celebrated on Sunday.

The first-ever WALKstock festival was held Sunday at the city's International Friendship Gardens. Organized by EcoSuperior, the event included a number of community organizations who were on-hand to share tips and advice on how to make walks in the city more enjoyable.

"We really want to just encourage a walking community," said Nancy Angus, WALKstock coordinator. "I think walking is the best way to kind of really get to know your neighbours, you talk face-to-face."

"It's a fairly simple activity that most of us can do, walking," she said. "It doesn't cost a lot of money. So we just really want to give people some reason to have an old-fashioned connector with neighbours."

About 20 groups participated

WALKstock included a number of booths and activities. Northern Hearts was there to promote their walking groups, for example, and Thunder Bay Art Gallery representatives were on-hand to demonstrate travel sketching, while the Lakehead Region Conservation Authority provided wildlife sighting checklists.

Angus said this year's WALKstock was made possible by a one-time grant, but she hopes the festival will continue.

"I'd love to see it as an annual event," she said. "It'll be really neat to see what the takeaway is from today."

"This is our first year, so there's lots of things that we're learning, but at the same time, I think, already, just the turnout is really exciting."