Wapusk Trail premiere to raise funds for indigenous communities

Trail Hub Durham is hosting today the world premiere of adventure short documentary, Wapusk Trail, during a fundraiser to support northern indigenous communities.

The special screening event is taking place today, February 27, at Trail Hub, located at 722 Chalk Lake Road in Uxbridge. Tickets are $30 and can be purchased online at www.trailhubshop.ca/film-premier. There is a limit of only 175 tickets available. The event runs from 7 pm to 11 pm.

The expedition was filmed by Eric Batty and is the focus of the 30-minute documentary.

Spanning 772 kilometres, the Wapusk Trail is the world’s longest seasonal winter road. Running along the Hudson’s Bay coast and connecting Peawanuk First Nations, Ontario to Shamattawa and Gillam in Manitoba. The Wapusk Trail is an ice road carved over terrain that is unpassable in warmer months, and home to scores of polar bears in winter.

It’s a trail designed to be a lifeline for some of the most remote communities in Canada, and one that was never designed to be crossed under human power. But in March of 2020, the trio of Eric Batty, Buck Miller and Ryan Atkins, who together form Expeditions Ontario, set out to become the first team to ever successfully complete the Wapusk Trail without motorized assistance.

Wapusk Trail anchors a trio of short films that will be shown at the event. Also screening on this night are two earlier short films from Eric Batty ‘Crossing Algonquin’ which documents a 165 km, 10-day winter trek in February 2018 across Ontario’s famed Algonquin Provincial Park, and ‘James Bay Descent’ which documents the team’s 638 km descent along the shores of James Bay in February 2019.

Fundraising Event

The trio’s love for the vastness of Ontario’s north and the unique expeditionary challenges offered also extends to the indigenous communities whose traditional lands are home to their adventures. It’s why their expeditions have also included fundraising efforts to support these communities who have always welcomed them warmly on every adventure.

Proceeds from all ticket sales to the event will support True North Aid, a registered charitable organization that supports indigenous communities of the James and Hudson Bay Watershed. To date, these three films have already raised $25,000 in support to northern indigenous communities.

“I can’t wait to connect with so many people who share the same vision of a better Canada by helping our Indigenous friends of the remote North through our film premiere night at the Trail Hub Durham,” notes Buck Miller. “Human powered adventure is a great passion of mine and it’s taken me extensively through the swampy Cree homelands on James and Hudson Bay and left me with a life-long love and respect for the people and their environment.”

Both Eric Batty and Buck Miller will be in attendance for the screenings. Representatives from True North Aid will also be on hand to explain their programs. Between screenings there will be Q&A sessions as well as silent auctions to be bid upon.

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