News / Calgary

Calgarians set Guinness World Record for 'Largest Gathering of People Dressed As Batman'

What do hundreds of Calgarians dressed head-to-toe in Batman costumes do while they wait for the final few stragglers to join them and set a Guinness World Record?

They dance, of course.

That was the surreal scene outside Nexen headquarters in downtown Calgary Thursday, as 500-some-odd employees of the oil and gas giant gathered to raise funds for the United Way and make their mark in the world-renowned book of weird and wondrous feats.

Understandably, the unusual ensemble attracted the attention of perplexed passersby, and one woman – who had no idea what was going on – nonetheless made an apropos request to event MC and United Way campaign co-chair Dave Kelly, which he dutifully passed on to the Batmen.

“I told them: ‘Danielle here in the crowd, who has no idea what you’re doing, would love to see you dance,’” Kelly recounted. “And they just busted out.”

Eventually the dancing died down and the full 542 participants had their costumes inspected by a Guinness Book of World Records staffer, who also ensured they all stood in one space for a full five minutes, before bestowing upon them the official world record for the “Largest Gathering of People Dressed As Batman.”

The previous record was a mere 250.

“We blew apart the old record,” Kelly said. “There was no comparison the greatness that we are.”

The world-record gathering was part of the United Way’s superhero-themed 2014 fundraising campaign.

"When we know we're united to do good, we have the power to make a difference," said Karen Young, vice-president and chief operating officer of the United Way of Calgary and Area.

Nexen has been a major supporter of the United Way, Young said, raising more than $17 million over the past 20 years during its annual campaigns.

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