Edmonton Considers Reviving ‘City of Champions’ Slogan

There is a renewed push to bring back the “City of Champions” slogan in Edmonton.

“This is the city of champions and it’s time we weren’t shy about admitting that again,” said Doug Griffiths, president and CEO of the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce. Griffiths is the man behind the push to bring back the beloved slogan that greeted people on the city’s welcome signs for decades before it was removed in 2015.

“After that sign was taken down we were just the city of Edmonton. That’s not something to rally behind. The city is great but it doesn’t inspire anything and we need inspiration and reminders of who we are and why we do things.”

The former MLA said the Edmonton Oilers making it to the Stanley Cup final has reminded people just how great, vibrant and successful the city is. That, coupled with the city’s many other achievements, is why Griffiths believes it’s time to restart the slogan conversation.

“The river valley’s robust, our economy’s turning around, we’ve got all sorts of great events going on downtown. The rodeo is coming back – the Canadian Finals Rodeo. We just have so many incredible things going on. But the Oilers going into the Stanley Cup playoffs reminds us that we’re champions,” he explained.

“This is a city where champions invest, where they live, where they recreate… where they raise families, where they solve problems, where they live. To me, it seems like it’s time that we bring that back given the fact that we are a city of champions through and through.”

Edmonton adopted the “City of Champions” moniker in the late 1980s as a way to mark the community’s response to the devastating Black Friday tornado in 1987, as well as the city’s sporting success in the ’80s.

Edmonton City Council voted in 2015 to do away with the slogan. At the time, then-mayor Don Iveson said the city was in a “post-tagline era.”

This isn’t the first time someone has tried to revive the old label. In 2016, a volunteer group took its push to city council, saying the “City of Champions” slogan should never have been removed in the first place.

Griffiths hopes this will spur a conversation among Edmontonians and result in city council approving the idea.

“We’re the event city. There is something on all the time and now we have the Canadian Finals Rodeo back. You add in all of the events going on downtown, the work the Downtown Business Association is doing, the investments in MacEwan (University) and other post-secondary institutions, the Stollery… We are leading the way in so many ways, in so many areas and we’re just getting started.”

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