Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we’re unable to host our in-person 5th anniversary of the Wasaya – United Way Plane Pull this year, SO we have created a BRAND NEW event in lieu of our Plane Pull for 2020!

United Way of Thunder BayIndigenous Youth Achievement and Recognition Awards (IYARA), and Wasaya Airways are excited to introduce and host our first ever ‘Run the North’ event, presented by Newmont and Bell, coming to all of Northwestern Ontario September 26 – October 4, 2020!

Join us in our goal of having 1000 people register across NWO in order to raise OVER $25,000 for United Way and IYARA!!

We’re inviting individuals from all across Northwestern Ontario to join us in a community challenge to ‘Run the North’. We want to make this the largest race in NWO and have people from every community in our region participating! Let’s show our province how connected we are and get all communities on the map!

This virtual non-competitive race can be run anywhere and anytime between the event dates. Participants can walk, run, bike or hike so you can ‘run your race at your pace’. People can choose from a 1k or 5k distance so the whole family can participate too!

All participants will receive a race kit including a medal and race bib. We’ll have a safe pick up location in Thunder Bay the week of the event. For anyone participating in our northern communities, these items will be shipped to you in advance.

There will be prizes to WIN! See all details below!

Date: Saturday, September 26 – Sunday, October 4, 2020

Times & Location: ‘Run the North’ from ANYWHERE you are and ‘RUN YOUR RACE AT YOUR OWN PACE’ any time between the event dates

Price: $25 per person to register, includes a race bib and a race medal

Registration Deadline: For guaranteed pick up of your race kits (medals and bibs), you must register by Sept 23 – however we will be keeping registration open until October 4th for anyone who may want to join the week of the event!

T-shirts: We are selling t-shirts in partnership with Superior Screen Printing! Items will range in pricing with $10-15 being donated back to the event from each clothing item sold! Choose from a variety of custom ‘Run the North’ design options, available for men, women, or children! To order YOUR special t-shirt visit https://www.tbayink.com/run-the-north

Race Kit Pick Up Location & Dates: Race Kits will be available for pick up at Fresh Air on Thursday, September 24 from 12-3P.M. and Friday, September 25 from 4-7P.M.

Prizes: We will be giving away prizes for 2 different initiatives:

1. Fundraising: Additional fundraising is optional and encouraged! Ask your family, friends, colleagues, doctor, cab driver, or whoever your know for pledges in support of the event. For every $50 you raise (in addition to your registration fee), you will receive an entry into our fundraising prize draws (ex. if  you fundraise $200, you will receive 4 ballots into the draw). We will also have 1 grand prize for top individual fundraiser! Prizes will be announced Sept 14th!



Top Individual Fundraising Prize
The individual who raised the MOST will win: Weighted Blanket, YETI Rambler, Goodr Running Glasses, Massage Roller, Hair Bands, $25 Amazon Gift Card, $25 Wacky’s Gift Card, Running Room Hat (Value $250)

Fundraising Prize #1:
Fitbit Charge 3, Goodr Running Glasses, Crackling Firewood & Ember Scented Candle, Traceless Hair Ring Ties, $50 Giant Tiger Gift Card, $25 Amazon Gift Card (Value $250)

Fundraising Prize #2:
Intimes Men’s Watch, Men’s Wash & Scrub Package, Resistance Loop Microband, $25 Cheese Encounter Gift Card, Running Room Hat (Value $250)

Fundraising Prize #3:
Watermelon Parkland Bag with lifetime warranty, reading socks, project book, women’s hair care (shampoo / conditioner / hairspray), $25 Google Play Gift Card, Running Room Hat (Value $150)

You can use the online peer-to-peer fundraising platform to collect online credit donations – a tax receipt will be emailed to all donors instantly. Your personal fundraising page will be created instantly when you register for the event. OR you can use our paper pledge form to collect cash or cheque from your donors. All forms and monies must be handed in before the event at Fresh Air when you come and pick up your race kits.

If you would like the pledge form, please email emikkola@uwaytbay.ca or you can also find it in the back end of your Canada Helps registration profile after you register for the event.

2. Get Social: Share your Run the North journey with us while you are out doing your race!! Take a photo before, during, or after your race with your race bib and / or medal and post it on your social media! Be sure to hashtag #RuntheNorth AND tag United Way of Thunder Bay (@uwaytbay) and Indigenous Youth Achievement & Recognition Awards (@nwoayara)

Become A Race Ambassador: As a Race Ambassador, you will represent your community or organization helping to recruit and promote “Run the North” – Northwestern Ontario’s largest virtual race! For full details on your role as an ambassador and the perks, CLICK HERE

If you would like to become a Race Ambassador, please email Erika at emikkola@uwaytbay.ca or Sharon ssmithbaxter@wasaya.com to let us know! You can then print and use the following tracking sheets to track your recruits:

Run the North – Race Ambassador Tracking FILLABLE ONLINE Form

Run the North – Race Ambassador Tracking Form (Printable Form)


OR fill out are paper registration form below, and email it to emikkola@uwaytbay.ca

Run the North FILLABLE Registration Form 2020


Presenting Sponsors: 

Moose Sponsor: 

Event Supporters: 

Superior Screen Printing, Fresh Air, The Creative, UCB Canada

Invest in your community and create positive change by becoming a sponsor today! Click the package below to see the various sponsorship levels and benefits:

Run the North 2020 – Sponsorship Package