Challenge the Chief

Registration is OPEN.

On May 5, 2019, hundreds of firefighters from all over North America and the world will climb the stairs of Calgary's BOW tower, Western Canada's tallest building, in support of firefighters and citizens living with cancer. Calgary is poised to cheer on the brave ones who will climb the 775 vertical feet –  1204 steps – of THE BOW Building in full duty gear.  Starting at 3400 feet above sea level, this climb is the highest elevation firefighter stairclimb in the world!

This event is open only to firefighters - with the exception of 10 determined people who will be challenging Calgary Fire Chief Steve Dongworth to a race to the top of the BOW. Challengers will race the chief prior to the main climb and the winner will be announced at the end of event day. 

The Firefighter Stairclimb Challenge is an annual event that started in 2015. Originally inspired by Seattle’s Scott Firefighter Stairclimb, Kathy Blas, sister of local fallen firefighter Gord Paul, brought this event to the attention of the Calgary Fire Department, the Calgary Firefighters Benevolent Society (CFBS) and a local cancer charity, Wellspring Calgary. Wellspring provides programs, resources and support to people living with cancer along with their caregivers. There are 17 presumptive cancers that are a recognized occupational hazard of the firefighter's job. Those who live with cancer are heroes to their families and friends, living out each day with courage and hope. Firefighters also provide courage and hope; they are our everyday heroes. The event is fully endorsed and supported by the Calgary Fire Department.

Wellspring Calgary will gift a portion of net event proceeds to support the Firefighters Assistance Charitable Society (FACS); their mission is to empower and strengthen the firefighter by enhancing the success and resilience of the firefighter community.


About Wellspring Calgary

Wellspring Calgary is a warm and welcoming community that provides a comprehensive range of support, resources and programs to those living with cancer and their caregivers.

A cancer diagnosis can be devastating. It brings countless life-altering moments and events for the people who receive the diagnosis and for those who love them. People with cancer are compelled to find a new ‘normal,' before, during and after treatment. Priorities shift, relationships change, and life becomes very different.

Wellspring Calgary addresses the body-mind-spirit of those living with cancer those diagnosed, their families and their caregivers. Wellspring Calgary helps those affected by cancer address the fear, isolation, disruption and practical problems cancer brings to their lives. Programs and resources are offered free of charge and without a referral, so no one has to face cancer alone.


Firefighter Stairclimb Challenge Sponsors & Supporters