Travelling is one of the best ways to learn more about our nation. One of the reasons I love visiting cities and towns across the country with Canada AM is that it gives me the unique opportunity to meet Canadians one at a time, and I learn more about Canada every time I travel. From Surrey, B.C. to St. John?s, Nfld, each community offers something that will intrigue, enlighten and educate other Canadians.
Canada boasts some of the largest objects in the world – oddities I always enjoy on the road. Did you know that Kimberly, B.C. is Canada’s Bavarian town in the Rockies, complete with the world’s largest cuckoo clock? Hartland, New Brunswick is home of the world’s largest covered bridge, and when we stopped there every child in public school in the small town came out and sang in front of their famous bridge waving Canadian or New Brunswick flags. This idyllic shot was a stark contrast to our stop in Dauphin, Manitoba where I was the only oddity: we shot a canon in close proximity to several skittish horses who startled me into running in the opposite direction on live television!
These experiences are characteristic of what makes travelling across Canada so memorable ? the sights, sounds and smells of unique communities nationwide. Whether it?s trying to swallow deep fried prairie oysters in Swift Current, Saskatchewan or burning the roof of my mouth on delicious rappie pies on the Acadian Coast in Nova Scotia (apparently there’s an unwritten rule about spitting out food on live TV!), savouring each region?s delicacies is always one of the best parts about having breakfast on the road. It?s wonderful to see a whole community come together to share the flavour of their town with the rest of the nation.
Visiting dynamic communities is a great privilege on Canada AM. It is remarkable to witness residents of these villages, towns and hamlets share the distinctiveness of their communities with the rest of the country. From local traditions to cuisine to music, these residents are quick to demonstrate what makes their community special, and that really puts the Canada in Canada AM.
This year, Canada AM is eager to continue its journey across the country by challenging all communities to prove they are one of the nation?s best. The Wake up a Winner Community Challenge offers Canadians the opportunity to highlight the distinguishing attributes of their hometowns. We want to receive letters, emails and especially videos from viewers to show us what makes their town stand out. The four winners of this contest will be announced in September and Canada AM will broadcast live from the winning cities later in the Fall. The best part of this challenge is that more communities will have the chance to let the rest of the country know who they are, what they do, and what they have to offer.
Having crossed this vast country many times, it may seem like the folks in Dawson City, Yukon have little in common with those in Cavendish, P.E.I., yet all these places, and all these people do have one thing in common ? they?re all Canadians. The pride they feel for their own communities is the same pride they share for being Canadian. That’s the thread that links us east to west, and north to south.