The Sparwood Curling Club is located in the heart of Sparwood adjacent to the Elk River in the beautiful Rocky Mountains.
This club originated after the old Michel Natal Curling Club was shut down and residents of the old coal mining communities of Michel and Natal were relocated to the new town of Sparwood.
The Sparwood Curling Club is part of a large recreational complex built in 1978 by the District of Sparwood. The Sparwood Curling Club leases the facility from the District of Sparwood for 5 months out of the year.
The club has always been a volunteer base organization and its spirit comes from the hard working people associated with the coal mining which has been going on in the Elk Valley for the past 100+ years. Just as coal mining in the Elk Valley has suffered many boom and bust cycles over the years, so has the curling club. None were more devastating than the collapse of the coal mining industry in 1992 when Westar Mining went bankrupt throwing ~1,500 local residents out of work. The Sparwood Curling Club did not operate that season.
In 1993, a small group of approximately 40 residents resurrected the club and the leagues even though there was substantial debt owed to the District of Sparwood (~$20,000.00). Over the course of the next 27 years the club flourished. Hard work was the theme and a core group of dedicated volunteers brought the Club back to life and repaid the debt to the District. This was accomplished through club volunteers bartending extra community functions during the curling season and the off season, as well as numerous other fundraising activities.
What makes the Sparwood Curling Club so special is the welcoming spirit and friendly people participating in the mens, ladies, mixed and Junior leagues. Multigenerational participation in the club is common with parents playing with kids and grandkids, a truly family fun activity and memorable experience.
The club has a lounge and bar which is affectionately called Mum’s Pub in recognition of the long serving volunteer bartender, Irene Endicott who has served 18 years. At 89 years old she still happily serves drinks to patrons who all call her “mom”. Her great smile and welcoming demeanor is always a hit for new members coming into the club.
In 2017 the community of Fernie, 20 miles to the west of Sparwood, suffered a tragic incident at their recreational complex. As a result, the Fernie Curling Club was shut down for 2 years. The Sparwood Curling Club was approached to host the Fernie Seniors Curling Group and the Fernie Super League to give them a place to play. The Sparwood Curling Club welcomed the groups with open arms and gave true meaning to Curl Canada’s slogan: “ Our house is your house”. The ice maintenance volunteers took on the extra work and prepared the ice two to three extra times a week for the Fernie groups. The club volunteers put in more effort to help purchase a new ice scraper to decrease the volunteer hours needed to provide the great keen ice for all participants.
As the Sparwood Curling club had never operated a Senior Curling League in the afternoon it presented an opportunity for some Sparwood Senior curlers to join the Fernie group during this time frame. Great fun was had by all and bonds formed during this time frame were strong. With Fernie returning to their home club for the 2019/20 season some Sparwood Seniors have continued to travel to Fernie to enjoy the afternoon curling and socializing opportunity.
The Sparwood Curling Club would be thrilled to welcome the Tankard and demonstrate why we think we have the most welcoming and fun club in the country.