Canadian Tire employees take on ice bucket challenge

Matt
Matt Gardner
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The viral campaign to raise funds for ALS research hit the local Canadian Tire on Friday as store employees took on the ice bucket challenge en masse.

Standing in front of the Prince Albert store at the crack of dawn, general manager Lyle Banting led dozens of employees in the challenge, representing an estimated 70 per cent of the store’s workforce.

“We decided to do it today because we got challenged by our Canadian Tire Yorkton store,” Banting said.

“We stepped up to the plate and I asked the staff if they were willing to do it … I took the video around for them and they all said, ‘Yep, we’ve got to do that.’ So we did it.”

The ALS ice bucket challenge involves dumping a bucket of ice water over one’s head to promote awareness of the disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and encourage donations for research.

Participating store employees all made donations this week, and the owner of the Canadian Tire Gas Bar made a monetary contribution while providing the ice for the challenge.

Meanwhile, the most visible donation came from store owner Malcolm Jenkins, who pledged $5,000 towards ALS research.

Prior to having the first bucket of ice water dumped on his head, Banting issued a challenge to the Prince Albert Wal-Mart store as well as Canadian Tire stores in Melfort and Saskatoon, who subsequently had 24 hours to complete the ice bucket challenge.

I asked the staff if they were willing to do it … I took the video around for them and they all said, ‘Yep, we’ve got to do that.’ Lyle Banting

After the dousing of their general manager, Canadian Tire employees lined up in a circular formation then dumped buckets of ice water on their own heads.

Their challenge was rendered more difficult by the cool temperature, which at the time of the challenge (8 a.m.) was 3 C, with a windchill that made it feel one degree cooler.

“It’s probably the coldest day of the summer so far, I’m thinking,” Banting said.

Nevertheless, staff members went ahead with the challenge, making sure to include plenty of ice with their water.

The resulting combination of cool morning air and icy water made for a brisk start to the day.

“It was cold,” Banting said with a chuckle. “It was real cold.”

Organizations: Canadian Tire, Prince Albert

Geographic location: Melfort, Saskatoon

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