Spotted! Charity ‘flash mob’

The Ride to Conquer Cancer organizes a four-city stunt to promote fundraising for a 2010 event.

If you were around Queen St. and Bay St. in Toronto yesterday around 1 p.m., you might have noticed a mob of yellow-shirted cyclists raising their bikes in the air with glee.

It wasn’t a coincidence that similarly-attired cyclists arrived at the same corner at the same time, but rather an awareness-raising stunt organized by the Ride to Conquer Cancer, a fundraising charity that supports cancer-research foundations in Ontario, Quebec, Alberta and B.C. The flash-mob style events took place in Montreal, Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver at 1:05 p.m. local time in each city.

Although the Ride to Conquer Cancer takes place annually in the summer, this event was organized to get people thinking about fundraising early, Jackson Wightman, spokesperson for the charity, tells MiC.

‘The goal was to… raise awareness about the events by doing a media-relevant, visually appealing photo opportunity. So [we had], in each city, a group of anywhere from 50 to 200 cyclists descend onto iconic city corners. We didn’t want to interrupt traffic; we know there’s been an issue in some cities about that, so we weren’t looking to be adversarial – it was all under the rubric of raising awareness about cancer.’