RMOW issues Commuter Challenge 

Prizes for business, individuals who use alternative transportation

The fourth annual Whistler Commuter Challenge is set to kick of on Thursday, Sept. 22 – World Car Free Day – and will run until Wednesday, Oct. 5 – the middle of International Walk to School Week.

The goal of the Challenge is to get Whistler employees to bike, walk, carpool and take public transportation to work for a two week period, leaving cars at home.

While other communities across Canada support Commuter Challenge events, Whistler is the only community where the Challenge runs for two weeks.

During that time all participating employees of Whistler will have an opportunity to collect points to become eligible for draw prizes, including a one-year family pass to Meadow Park and a 2005-06 ski pass.

If your business would like to participate (individuals are still eligible to win draw prizes) or if you would like to sign up as an individual, forms are available at Municipal Hall or by visiting www.whistler.ca . You can also sign-up at the launch on Thursday, Sept. 22 at Town Plaza Gazebo, featuring a free pancake breakfast and a commuter fashion show.

During the Commuter Challenge, the municipal One-Tonne Challenge program will be holding a side contest where the winning entry will be eligible to win a 2005 Marin Mountain Bike.

Every day you take an alternative mode of transportation to work, you get a certain amount of points. If you reach 40 points you get one entry into the prize draw. If you make 80 points, or the maximum allowable points, you’ll get a second entry.

Last year close to 800 Whistler residents and employees took part, and organizers are hoping to get more than 1,000 this year.

Commuter Challenge Schedule of Events

One-Tonne Commuter Challenge; Sept. 15 to Oct. 5 – Fill out a prize ballot printed in Pique Newsmagazine or on your Commuter Challenge entry form, commit to reducing your greenhouse gas emissions by one tonne, and get a chance to win a 2005 mountain bike.

Pancake Breakfast and Fashion Show; Thursday, Sept. 22 – For the fourth year in a row the Commuter Challenge will kick off with a free pancake breakfast and sign-on at the Town Plaza Gazebo, 7 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. New this year is a Commuter Fashion Show, where local cyclists will model their cycling gear.

How Slow Can You Go Race; Monday, Sept. 26 – The Whistler and Valley Express is holding this inaugural event at the WAVE Transit Garage in Function Junction from noon to 2 p.m. The winners are the cyclists that take the longest to navigate an obstacle course while keeping both feet on pedals.

Creekside Coffee/Slushy Run; Wednesday; Wednesday Sept. 28 – The Husky Service Station and Creekside Starbucks are hosting this promotion. Show up at either location between noon and 2 p.m. using sustainable transportation to get a coupon for a free coffee from Starbucks or slushy from Husky.

Wild Willies’ Bicycle Maintenance Clinic; Friday, Sept. 30 – Wild Willies bike mechanics are hosting a free bicycle maintenance clinic that covers all the basics. Runs from noon to 2 p.m. in Nesters Mall parking lot.

Pique Newsmagazine/WAVE Bus Buffet; Tuesday, Oct. 4 – All Commuter Challenge participants can get a free hot dog lunch in the Gondola Transit Exchange from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Commuter Challenge Awards Ceremony; Wednesday, Oct. 19 – Once all the results are tabulated, the Whistler Chamber of Commerce will present the awards for the 2005 Commuter Challenge. Time and location to be determined.

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