Monday, April 28, 2008

Nunavut Quest

At noon today the annual Nunavut Quest dog team race sets off from Igloolik. Think of it as Nunavut's version of Yukon's Iditerod. What began as a festivity to celebrate the creation of Nunavut in 1999 is now into its 10th running. Racers from Arctic Bay, Igloolik, Hall Beach, Pond Inlet and Repulse Bay have all competed in the past. The race is going to be documented by the Inuit Broadcasting Corporation. I'm not sure how much footage, if any, will make it onto the television but I plan to keep my eyes peeled for it. Last year's top prize was a cool $10 000 so this tends to draw a lot of people out and generate a great deal of excitement. I should add that this is not just a "male only" event as the race does has had some female entrants from time to time. In fact, if memory serves me correctly, a young woman from Igloolik won the Nunavut Quest last year.

The event is set to finish up here in Arctic Bay sometime on May 6 or 7. Next week I expect there will be a big swell in the population as people from neighbouring communities arrive to celebrate with raffles, dances and traditional feasts. Fun times ahead.