From Amanda Mochan in Calgary

On Wednesday, September 28, I was in Calgary, Alberta, Canada for a record attempt for the largest gathering of people dressed as Superman. The attempt was made by the employees of Nexen Inc., a Canadian energy company.

The previous record was 288 participants, set in Ireland in August last year.

Nexen was aiming high - they expected at least 400 participants - and the attempt was for a good cause. Nexen used the record attempt to kick off their corporate United Way fundraising campaign, which had the theme "Be a Superhero".

According to Guinness World Records guidelines, the Superman costume must consist of a blue full body cover outfit, red underpants worn over the blue suit, an 'S' sign on the front of the chest in red and yellow, a yellow belt, red boots, and a red cape. Instead of leaving the costumes to chance, Nexen decided to order identical costumes for employees. It's worth noting that Nexen took the trouble to confirm that the costumes were all ethically and humanely made.

Superman 2.jpg

Prior to the official start time, employees registered and donned their Superman outfit. I was stationed at the single entrance to the attempt (which took place in an enclosed park adjacent to the company building), and hand counted each Superman that entered. After all were accounted for, I had a total of 437 participants.

The Supermen still had to stay gathered together for ten minutes for the record to be official. An emcee kept the crowd going, and employees were told a bit more about the United Way giving campaign. Everyone was in high spirits, and there was even a special guest in the crowd - a dog dressed in a full Superman getup, complete with cape and fake arms. While he didn't count towards the record total, Superdog was a hit with all who attended.

After the ten minutes was up, I was able to announce a new Guinness World Records achievement of 437 participants, and officially presented the certificate to Nexen CEO Marvin Romanow.

Congratulations go out to Nexen staff who organized the event (special recognition to Gregory John, Andrea Bosnjak, Melanie Swenson and Lisa Sills), United Way employees who took the time to attend, and most importantly, Nexen employees who gave up their lunch breaks to participate in such a worthwhile event. Congratulations!