The traveling Peace Arch was conceived by PDG Mel Hollinger in 1989. When Mel was installed as District Governor in 1990 he implemented the program with the following words:
  
"This Peace Arch is a symbol of friendship between our two countries. The object is to encourage us to travel back and forth across the border to neighboring clubs to visit and enjoy Rotary. It must not sit on one side of the border for long periods of time."
 
Over the years it has traveled many thousands of miles across our border, and has helped build many new Rotary friendships. Although it was conceived in 1989, it is uncertain when the program actually began. According to an article written by Bruce Kleeberger, the first exchange of the Traveling Peace Arch took place on May 2nd, 2003 with the Rotary Club of Anacortes (WA). It has traveled across the border between "Sons of a Common Mother" ever since.
 
When a club has received a surprise visit from the latest custodian of District 5050's symbol of inter-club fellowship, it was their responsibility to pass it on across the border as quickly as possible. In one case, the Bellingham Sunrise (WA) club, delivered it to the White Rock Peninsula Club (BC) within four hours.
 
Unfortunately, over the years the tradition has sometimes languished, until today the original arch has actually been lost.
 
At the 2019 District Conference, District Governor Linda Murray replaced the original Peace Arch replica with a Peace Arch coffee cup, reinventing the tradition and turning it into a district wide contest in hopes of revitalizing the program and encouraging interclub fellowship. The rules of the contest are simple...
 
Traveling Peace Arch Contest Rules
 
1.       Take the cup to a club meeting of your choice ON THE OPPOSITE SIDE OF THE US CANADIAN BORDER FROM YOUR CLUB.
2.       Take as many of your club members as possible with you.
3.       Points are awarded as follows
a.       Points awarded can be POSITIVE or NEGATIVE!
b.       5 positive points for each member in your group
c.       1 positive point for each mile between your regular meeting place and theirs
d.       10 negative points for each week or portion of a week that the cup is still in your possession beginning 14 days after you received it.
e.       10 positive points extra will be awarded if you upload a story and pictures of your visit.
4.       After visiting another club and leaving the cup behind, log onto www.district5050.org, click on the link to this story, and add your comments below to receive credit for your visit. Remember to describe your visit in detail and email a copy, including pictures for extra points to editor.paj@gmail.com !
5.       The club with the most POSITIVE points will be recognized annually and awarded a prize decided on by the current District Governor
6.       The club with the most NEGATIVE points will also be recognized annually and awarded a (Booby?) prize decided on by the current District Governor.
 
For more information about the Travelling Peace Arch, please contact the TPA Coordinator by emailing editor.paj@gmail.com.