Churchill Wild is pleased to announce that our co-founders and owners Mike and Jeanne Reimer, who pioneered the world’s first and only polar bear walking safaris over 20 years ago, have been elected to the prestigious Royal Canadian Geographical Society’s (RCGS) College of Fellows.
The husband and wife team from Manitoba, Canada were officially recognized as Fellows at the College of Fellows Annual Dinner, which took place on November 18, 2015 at the Canadian Museum of History in Ottawa.
“We’re honoured and humbled to be elected as Fellows,” said Mike Reimer. “We’ve always tried our best to introduce the world to the wonders of the Canadian Arctic and we look forward to helping the RCGS achieve their mandate.”
Family-owned and operated, Churchill Wild has a history in northern ecotourism that extends back almost 100 years. It now operates its ground-level polar bear tours from three remote luxury eco-lodges deep in the heart of polar bear territory on Canada’s Hudson Bay coast.
Churchill Wild’s unique polar bear tours are currently run out of Seal River Heritage Lodge, 60 km north of Churchill near the Seal River estuary; Nanuk Polar Bear Lodge, 250 km southeast of Churchill near York Factory, and Dymond Lake Ecolodge, 30 km north of Churchill.
Founded in 1929, the RCGS is one of Canada’s largest non-profit educational organizations, with the important mandate of making Canada better known to Canadians and to the world, fostering a deeper appreciation of Canada’s natural, cultural and social heritage. The RCGS is dedicated to imparting a broader knowledge and deeper appreciation of Canada, and that objective strongly resonates with Churchill Wild’s mission to share the natural beauty and grandeur of the Hudson Bay coastline with people from around the world.
The Royal Canadian Geographical Society’s College of Fellows embodies the longstanding values and tenets of the RCGS: the determination to build, courage to explore and steadfast love of country. The first Fellows were elected in 1930 and the College’s ranks now include many of Canada’s foremost geographers, explorers, scientists, artists, anthropologists, soldiers, business leaders, historians and educators of all kinds, from school teachers to university presidents.
The list of Fellows reads like the Who’s Who of Canada including such luminaries as Nobel Prize-winner Frederick G. Banting; anthropologist and explorer Diamond Jenness; artist A.Y. Jackson; explorers Vilhjalmur Stefansson, Lord Edward Shackleton, Henry Larson, Rosita Forbes, Bernard Voyer, Wade Davis and Sir Christopher Ondaatje; astronauts Steven Maclean, Robert Thirsk and Julie Payette; tycoon E.P. Taylor, former Alberta Premier Peter Lougheed, geophysicist J. Tuzo Wilson, Gen. A.G.L. McNaughton, and television celebrity/philanthropist Alex Trebek.
Mike and Jeanne Reimer were nominated to the Royal Canadian Geographical Society’s College of Fellows by André Préfontaine, the Chief Development Officer at RCGS. Churchill Wild, in partnership with the RCGS, hosted a specially designed Hudson Bay Odyssey during the summer of 2015 that included stays at Seal River Heritage Lodge and Nanuk Polar Bear Lodge. The Hudson Bay Odyssey featured Churchill Wild’s signature walks with polar bears as well as swimming with beluga whales.
The unique Arctic safari was led by Préfontaine, who hosted 14 guests from Australia, Switzerland and UAE, as well as from San Francisco, Pittsburgh and New York. “The trip greatly exceeded all expectations,” said Préfontaine.
Churchill Wild will again be partnering with RCGS in 2016, this time for an Arctic Discovery from August 12-20. Now booking, the customized departure will explore the history of Churchill and surrounding area, while also featuring kayaking with beluga whales and walking with polar bears at Nanuk Polar Bear Lodge.
The specialized Arctic safari will be led by RCGS Ambassador, renowned global adventurer, storm chaser, explorer and television presenter George Kourounis, whose efforts have been seen around the world on the Discovery Channel, National Geographic Explorer, BBC-TV, CNN and his own adventure TV program Angry Planet, which has been broadcast in over 100 countries.