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Fernie in the spotlight in Amazing Race Canada

Fernie (and the Sparwood sign) was featured in an Amazing Race Canada episode on July 19, 2022
A private event was held at the Cast Iron Grill Tuesday, July 19, 2022, to celebrate the airing of The Amazing Race Canada episode featuring Fernie, and to thank the businesses, organizations and individuals involved in making the episode happen. (Joshua Fischlin/The Free Press)

Fernie had eyes on it from across the nation Tuesday night for the airing of an Amazing Race Canada episode featuring the town.

At The Cast Iron Grill, 30 people gathered for a private event to watch the episode.

Christine Grimble of Tourism Fernie said the evening was about celebrating the airing of the show and giving thanks to the businesses and individuals in the community that played a role in bringing the ‘episode to life.’

She said the show was an ‘amazing opportunity for our community and for our destination.’

“It shares our community to a national audience, and reaches far and wide, coast to coast with different demographics,” she said.

She added that it shares ‘unique elements’ of Fernie, like the ‘stunning scenery’, different available activities, and ‘our vibrant and our character-filled downtown.’

The episode was filmed in town in early May, and featured local businesses like GearHub Sports and Kootenay Fly Shop, and well as local dancers like Marlene Vale and her crew. The final stop of the race was the Fernie Golf Club, she said.

Janice Alpine of the Kootenay Aboriginal Business Development Agency was also involved, welcoming teams at the finish line.

“It was really good to be standing there with everybody, it was awesome,” she said.

On the organizational side was the City of Fernie, Tourism Fernie, and the Fernie Chamber of Commerce, according to Grimble.

“There was an incredible effort by The Amazing Race Canada to focus on hiring local, using local businesses wherever and whenever possible.”

Kristen Learned, communications specialist with Destination BC, said they make location recommendations to The Amazing Race Canada. She said they worked with Kootenay Rockies Tourism in bringing the show to town.

Speaking to the benefit to a small town like Fernie, she said “It’s huge.”

The Amazing Race Canada helps to ‘dial into a whole new audience’ that might not have otherwise been engaged with, she said.

“This whets the appetite for the destination, and hopefully they’ll look into it more to explore BC,” Learned said.

“We’re so excited any time we can get eyes on different parts of British Columbia… and I think we’ll really see that with Fernie in this season.”

READ MORE: Tourism numbers looking good for Fernie, with record winter visitation

READ MORE: FAR’s Timber Chair to be open on July 30


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