Erika Guarnieri is a 9-year-old who was fortunate enough to win the opportunity to spend a day in the company of the mayor of Laval, Marc Demers. While at an outdoor neighborhood party organized David De Cotis, Deputy Mayor and Councilor of Saint-Bruno, a raffle ticket purchased to support the Alzheimer’s Society was the lucky winner of the “Mayor for a Day” contest.

As the winner of this contest, Erika accompanied the mayor to a Saint-Jean event last summer at the Maison des Arts de Laval; with her, 11-year-old sister Serena Guarnieri, and their mother, Maria Nudi. At the event, Erika had the privilege of standing alongside the mayor as he introduced Quebec artists on stage. She even met some of the artists and collected a few autographs, including one from Alex Nevsky, a Quebec singer and songwriter.

Before the Saint-Jean event, Erika, her sister, and mother visited the Société de Transport de Laval (STL) facility where they rode on the first electrical bus. “We got to see all the electrical buses that were plugged in and even got to go through a bus car wash,” says Erika. The three learned a lot about how the STL functions and the new buses, including the cost of a single bus.

Erika, her sister, and mother toured the office where the mayor works and met many who work there. “The day was very well organized and targeted towards younger children. Everyone at the office was very welcoming and the mayor was very easy to get along with,” says Nudi. “I really felt like he was there for the girls because he exchanged a lot with them throughout the day.”

During their visit, the three learned a lot about the office, what the mayor does in a day, and the STL. “My favorite part was meeting the artists at the concert, everyone at the office, and the mayor because he made me laugh,” Erika says. Erika and Serena also had the pleasure of signing their names in a guestbook as the first child visitors of the office, making their visit official.

After a fun and educational day, the two girls are happy that they had this opportunity. “I would like to do it again because I really liked riding on the bus and going to see the singers and artists at the concert. I learned that being the mayor is hard because he has to meet a lot of people and I don’t like to do that,” says Serena.

If you would like to learn about how you can attend an event such as the neighborhood party that Erika attended, visit the Events and Festivals section of the City of Laval website at