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Lululemon was set to sponsor a giant celebration in honor of the International Day of Yoga on June 21 in the company's hometown of Vancouver, gathering thousand of yogis for a class on the city's Burrard Street Bridge. But Vancouver's "Om the Bridge" event faced so much backlash, Well+Good reports, that Lululemon ended up dropping out along with the rest of the event's sponsors.
First of all, Om the Bridge happened to fall on Canada's National Aboriginal Day. The event's $150,000 price tag was supposed to be picked up by taxpayers, and drivers complained that shutting down the bridge would snarl traffic. In light of the complaints, Vancouver's mayor announced he wouldn’t attend the event and would instead celebrate National Aboriginal Day. Om the Bridge's organizer, Premier of British Columbia Christy Clark, called out "yoga haters" on Twitter but ended up backing away from the event.
Lululemon spokesperson Jill Batie sent the following statement to the Vancouver Sun, confirming that Lululemon would not participate:
Downward dogs with a few thousand of our closest friends seemed like the perfect way to celebrate International Day of Yoga. Until it didn’t. We’ve read your posts and the media reports, and heard the disappointment in the voices of our community frustrated by the location, cost and date. We had the best intentions. And so we’re taking a deep cleansing breath and over the next several days, we’ll be reimagining a celebration that honours the spirit and tradition of yoga and serves our communities in a more meaningful way. Because ultimately, yoga is about connecting us to ourselves, each other, our environment, and eventually, our truth. Look for more information on our social channels coming soon. Thanks for your understanding. Namaste.