Flag raised at city hall in Thunder Bay, Ont. after City of Kingston prevails in commuter challenge wager
Thunder Bay, Ont. mayor Bill Mauro wore City of Kingston shirt while raising flag at city hall
After losing a friendly mayoral wager over the annual Commuter Challenge, Thunder Bay, Ont. mayor Bill Mauro had to raise the City of Kingston's flag at city hall while wearing a Kingston t-shirt on Mon., July 8.
Both cities saw a large increase in participation in the Commuter Challenge, with Thunder Bay having the second-highest participation rate per-capita in the country.
Mauro said, "It's all well-intentioned. Anything that communities can do to lead on this and encourage people to become more active, it's a good thing."
Last year, Thunder Bay had the highest number of participants in the Commuter Challenge for medium-sized cities. Prior to that, Kingston, Ont. had won the challenge for five consecutive years.
In response, Kingston's mayor Bryan Paterson challenged the City of Thunder Bay and mayor Mauro to a friendly competition in May 2019, to see which city could sign up the largest number of participants in the event.
. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/CommuterChallenge2019?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#CommuterChallenge2019</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/YGK?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#YGK</a> had the highest participation rate for a Canadian mid-sized city for 5 years. Last year we were bested by <a href="https://twitter.com/CityThunderBay?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@CityThunderBay</a> . Looking fwd to reclaiming our spot! Mayor Mauro, how do you feel about a friendly challenge? Is the sleeping giant up for it?—@MayorPaterson
In the end, there were 1,388 participants signed up from the City of Kingston, while Thunder Bay only had 1,107 participants.
This was the sixth year of the annual Commuter Challenge, a week-long event which encourages Canadians to leave their cars at home and use alternative means of transportation - like walking, biking, or using public transit - to commute to work.
This year saw over 17,000 people take part as they travelled over 1,400,000 kilometres to get to work.