Green Power vs. Star Power: David Suzuki Tops the List as Canada's Most Priceless(TM) Living Celebrity

    Suzuki, NBA Superstar Steve Nash, Rocky Mountain Drives, Calgary
    Stampede, Cape Breton and Banff among the top selections on 2007
    Priceless Index

    TORONTO, June 19 /CNW/ - Environmentalist David Suzuki ranked as this
year's most Priceless living Canadian celebrity, according to MasterCard
Canada's 2007 Priceless Index, its 5th barometer of Canadian patriotism that
tracks who, what and where is most Priceless to Canadians, including our
heroes, our symbols and our cities.
    "The 2007 Priceless Index takes the temperature of the Canadian social
climate," says Julie Wilson, Director, Public Affairs, MasterCard Canada.
"This year, green power towered over star power as David Suzuki was ranked as
our most Priceless living celebrity. Clearly, the environment is top-of-mind
with Canadians."
    Nationally, David Suzuki was ranked first overall with 33 per cent of the
respondents choosing him as the most Priceless living celebrity. Celine Dion
came in second with 18 per cent of the vote.

    Basketball or Hockey? Steve or Sidney?

    We Canadians love our sports, and pay special attention to our sports
heroes - especially those who have a North American impact. When asked to
choose the most Priceless Canadian sports hero of the past year, NBA superstar
Steve Nash ranked first overall (11%), followed closely by rising hockey star
Sidney Crosby (10%). Hockey legend Wayne Gretzky came in third (4%).

    Regionally, we are proudest of homegrown talent:

    -   Atlantic Canadians ranked Nova Scotia's Sidney Crosby as the most
        Priceless sports hero (31%), followed by Steve Nash (7%).
    -   A tale of two athletes: Ontarians couldn't choose between Steve Nash
        and Sidney Crosby, as they tied for most Priceless sports hero
        (10% each).
    -   Western Canada chose their hometown boy, with Alberta (13%) and
        British Columbia (18%) choosing British Columbian Steve Nash as their
        most Priceless sports hero.

    Hittin' those summer roads from West to East

    When Canadians were asked the best place for a road trip, six in ten
Canadians (59%) chose the Rocky Mountain region, followed by the Cabot Trail
on Cape Breton Island (14%).

    -   We sure are proud of our own backyards - a whopping 81 per cent of
        Albertans chose the Rocky Mountain region as the best part of Canada
        to drive through.
    -   British Columbians and those from Manitoba/Saskatchewan also ranked
        the Rocky Mountain region first at 79 per cent and 73 per cent,

    Best places to pitch a tent

    With summer giving us a chance to sleep in the great outdoors, the
Priceless Index asked Canadians which of Canada's national parks is the most
Priceless. Alberta's Banff came first (19%), followed by Ontario's Algonquin
second (15%) and Alberta's Jasper third (7%). Interestingly, Algonquin Park is
a provincial park - though its beauty and popularity is recognized at the
national level.

    -   Atlantic Canadians chose Newfoundland's Gros Morne (15%) as the most
        Priceless national park, followed by Banff (13%).
    -   More than a third of Ontarians (37%) chose Algonquin as the most
        Priceless, followed by Banff (15%).
    -   Quebeckers love their own Laurentian Park (11%), followed closely by
        Banff (10%).

    If you had to choose just one...Vancouver named top city for tourists

    Nearly one in five (19%) of respondents agreed Vancouver is the number one
Canadian city that tourists should not miss. But Quebec City is not far
behind, with 18 per cent of respondents choosing it as the must-see city,
followed by Montreal (14%), Toronto (13%) and Ottawa (8%).

    -   Atlantic Canadians love Toronto, with 15 per cent ranking Toronto
        first, followed by Quebec City, Ottawa and Montreal (all at 11%).
    -   Home is where the heart is - 26 per cent of Ontarians chose Toronto
        over Vancouver (14%), Ottawa (14%) and Quebec City (13%).
    -   Residents of Manitoba/Saskatchewan also ranked Vancouver (21%) top on
        their list, followed by Montreal (13%), Ottawa (10%) and
        Toronto (8%).
    -   It is no surprise that Albertans and British Columbians ranked
        Vancouver first, but both provinces also ranked Montreal second.
    -   Quebeckers sure love home! Quebec City is the city of choice (43%),
        followed by Montreal (30%).

    And since you are here, may we suggest...

    When asked which one of the following Canadian events or attractions would
be the most Priceless for a tourist, 37 per cent of Canadians chose the
Calgary Stampede. Most interestingly, all regions surveyed ranked the Calgary
Stampede as the number one do-not-miss event.
    However, while we all agreed on what is number one, there was not as much
consensus with what is number two:

    -   Atlantic Canadians ranked whale watching as number two (29%).
    -   Ontarians recommended tourists lace up their skates on Ottawa's
        Rideau Canal (18%).
    -   British Columbians and those in Manitoba/Saskatchewan also ranked
        whale watching as number two on their list (29% and 11%

    "We are very proud of our own backyards," says Wilson. "We want our
neighbours to see our homes, which is why we rank places closest to us the
most Priceless. But with so many great things happening, we also recognize the
need to be proud of what's happening in the rest of the country. One thing is
for sure though - on Canada Day, we will all be celebrating and honouring what
makes this country so special."

    Leave it to beaver

    We are proud of our animals and we know it, but one stood above the
others. Nationally, 38 per cent of Canadians chose the beaver as the animal
that best symbolizes Canada, followed by the moose (22%).

    -   Let us not forget the goose; Manitoba/Saskatchewan and British
        Columbians ranked the beaver first (36% and 44% respectively), and
        the Canada goose second (20% and 17%) respectively. The moose also
        tied for second in British Columbia.

    About the survey

    The Priceless Index is a national survey carried out regularly by
MasterCard. This national survey of 2,006 Canadians 18 years of age and over
was carried out by telephone between May 24 and May 31, 2007 by Environics
Research Group on behalf of MasterCard Canada. Results to a survey of this
size can be considered accurate to within plus or minus 2.2 percentage points,
19 times out of 20.

    About MasterCard Worldwide

    MasterCard Worldwide advances global commerce by providing a critical
economic link among financial institutions, businesses, cardholders and
merchants worldwide. As a franchisor, processor and advisor, MasterCard
develops and markets payment solutions, processes over 16 billion transactions
each year, and provides industry-leading analysis and consulting services to
financial institution customers and merchants. Through its family of brands,
including MasterCard(R), Maestro(R) and Cirrus(R), MasterCard serves consumers
and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. For more
information go to

For further information:

For further information: Don Blair, (416) 969-2726,; Olivia Yu, (416) 969-2718,

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