By Steve Hubrecht
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The Greenways Trail Alliance is launching a new event that aims to get valley residents out and active on the Markin-MacPhail Westside Legacy Trail this month.

The Greenways Summer Trail Challenge event is effectively a summer parallel to the popular virtual Whiteway Winter Challenge run by the Toby Creek Nordic Ski Club this past winter. Just as in the Whiteway challenge, participants can register for the Greenways Summer Trail Challenge as either individuals or teams and participants will challenge themselves — while remaining socially distant — to cycle, run, walk or self-propel themselves by other means as many kilometres as they can along the Westside Legacy Trail.

The challenge lasts one month, having started on Saturday, June 5 and running until Saturday, July 3. Participants will keep track of how far they go each week and will submit these distances to Greenways project manager Lianne Lang on Fridays. Lang will tabulate the results, keeping track of community benchmarks and goals, and tracing participants’ progress on a digital map that will display all participants’ collective progress from coast to coast across Canada.

Lang told the Pioneer that credit for the summer challenge belongs with Toby Creek Nordic Ski Club member Findlay Whittick, who suggested that a summer version of the Whiteway virtual challenge would be a good idea.

“People will walk, run, roller skate, cross country roller ski, or whatever they like,” Lang told the Pioneer, adding the event is also a fundraiser and that Greenways will use any net proceeds to help the nordic club purchases a pair of Alaska Ice Dragons — portable, propane-fired ice resurfacers which the club will use as mini zambonis to help keep the Whiteway smooth.

Two prizes will be awarded to individuals, and two will be awarded to teams. To register, visit the Greenways website at and then click on the Summer Trail Challenge tab.