Competitors in CTV’s Amazing Race Canada stopped in Fernie in an episode that aired on July 19.
Participants faced a number of challenges while visiting the community, or risked elimination from the race.
“They had to do either a mountain bike building test, or they could have gone to a fly fishing shop and follow a series of clues to put a variety of fishing flies in order,” said Christine Grimble, project and media manager with Tourism Fernie.
“Then they needed to move onto Main Street in downtown Fernie and complete an aerobic dance routine to perfection and then move onto the final stop, at the Fernie Golf Club.”
Grimble said it was exciting to see the community featured on a national broadcast.
“The Amazing Race is something that’s been going on for a number of years,” said Grimble. “During the filming of that event, they encouraged people to come out and support and watch. At the time, people didn’t know exactly what production was happening because we had to keep it quiet.”
On May 1, 2nd Avenue was closed to facilitate shooting the episode, but what exactly was being filmed was kept a secret.
“Everybody who got to come out and see it was really excited to see it happening and just a month and a half later, being able to see it on TV is something incredible,” said Grimble.
Tourism Fernie was involved in production to coordinate logistics and as a liaison between the chamber of commerce, the City of Fernie, local organizations and the production team.
“I held a very long-running secret. We were first contacted in December of 2019, and because of COVID, the actual production had to be put on the shelf,” explained Grimble. “When it was decided they were going to come out and actually do it, it was a number of years of planning in the process.”
Grimble hopes having Fernie portrayed on a national level will have a positive impact on the community’s tourism sector.
“It’s such an incredible opportunity to see our community, the destination, have that kind of exposure throughout the nation. It reaches such a broad audience from coast to coast. It’s the kind of exposure money can’t buy,” said Grimble.