Lac Des Roches

We decided last Family Day long weekend to introduce curling to our neighbours at our cabin on Lac Des Roches in the Cariboo region of BC.

With short notice, we had 16 people show up and our bonspiel started. This was not like your typical curling match, the lake ice was a bit uneven, we only had a button on the ice as we had not spray paint to make the rings and our rocks were made out of wood. None of these factors stopped us from having a great day with our neighbours, which is what curling is all about.

Over the last year we have made a logo for our bonspiel, done a ton of research on how to get smoother lake ice and searched desperately for real stones (which we now know will take a Go Fund me campaign to buy a set of used ones). We have even had rock glasses etched to give out to the champions this year.

Our little Lac Des Roches bonspiel has been the talk of our neighbourhood since last February and we are all looking forward to this years event. We even have more people joining us this year!

Curling is such a unique sport in that it brings so many different people together (no matter their age or skill).

 

 

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University ‘Rock Stars’

The newly formed Brandon University Bobcats curling teams are quickly becoming ‘Rock Stars’ in western Manitoba.

“It really seems to amp up the attitude and excitement within the residents.”

Health & Wellness Director Andy Depner of Victoria Landing on the Bobcats attending the All Seniors Care Living Centres Senior Games, including the Canada West silver medal winning curling team.  Full video story at, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zl1CD6D6Kvc

 

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Winning the Legion Championship!

Having Dianne Sergeew as the only women in the 2012 Royal Canadian Legion Dominion Curling Championship in Saskatoon, Sask. and, not wanting to do worse then our previous try, then actually winning was by far the biggest thrill and accomplishment for all of us.

The other teams applauded our win which was special.

Dan Mazuren, skip; Kevin Valliere, 3rd; Peter Mazuren, 2nd; and Dianne Sergeew lead.

No one – not even us – would have dreamt we would be Dominion Champions for the Royal Canadian Legion in our home province!

The Nutana Curling Club in Saskatoon is the best ice we loved it and curled without any expectations! Just curled and never gave up!

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Biggest regret was waiting so long to curl!

I’ve been told to never have regrets, but in my lifetime there have been a few. The biggest regret being that I had waited so long to learn to curl (30+ years old at the time).

I became part of a local club and within the first year was thrust into the wild world of managing a club while still trying to perfect my “hacker style” curling prowess. The first few years were hectic, trying and sometimes painful, but at the end of a 12 year stint of management I was done and realized how much of your heart and soul becomes dedicated to the sport of curling.

What can I take from the experience?

Curling brings many different cultures, ideals, and ages together for the common goal of curling. There is still a sense of tradition, etiquette and mentorship within the game that carries over into new and established players, with the hope that future generations will continue sharing.

Finally, curling brings a dynamic, diverse collective of people together for the sole enjoyment of a down to earth sport called curling, whether it be for the love of the game, the social aspect, or the camaraderie among family and friends.

Thank you curling for all you stand for and mean to those who have granite pumping through their veins.

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Hooked on Curling

Curling has been a big part of my life since 2001 when I attended the provincial Scottie’s. Since then I have been hooked.

From playing competitively, to researching the brain activity of Canada’s top curlers in university, to coaching, to camps and everything in between, I love this sport and everything it has given me.

Thanks to my volunteerism in the sport, in 2010 I had the amazing opportunity to be an Olympic torch bearer.

Last year, to commemorate the sport I love and that Olympic memory, I got a tattoo of a curling scene surrounded by an olive wreath symbolizing the Olympics.

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Curl Up For the Winter

Yes, you can curl up with a good book in January. The winter months will pass, and you will be a well-read blimp when you emerge in April.  Or you can try curling.

After we retired, my husband and I started curling at Weston Golf (and curling) Club. We enjoyed the game and made a lot of friends at Weston and things were going along smoothly until the management decided one September that they wanted to use the curling rink space for a golf academy. The curlers were declared redundant. We gathered together to commiserate, to vent, and to share our disappointment. Then we scurried off to find other rinks to play. It was very late to be registering for the fall season and the choices were few.

But Peter and I were met with open arms at High Park Curling Club. We were easily accommodated in their Saturday night social league. The club is not as posh as Weston but it’s not as elitist either. The curlers are a mix of all ages and all backgrounds. We no longer feel like rejects.

After the game, we e can be sitting at a table, sharing a drink with millennials, gen Xers, and old geezers like us, all at the same time. The conversation can range from hobbies to work projects to music. We try really hard to keep up and even learn some new things. For example, we found out that The Weekend is more than just two days – it’s a Canadian pop rock band!

Rarely does the conversation focus on illness, doctor appointments or sleeping problems. Hardly ever does one person ask another person to please speak louder. People talk about the latest food trend, or current event, or exercise routine. We follow along and add our opinions when we can. But when the subject changes to the latest technology, we start to yawn and put on our coats. There are some things that we will oldies never master.

The club is run entirely by volunteers. There are a number of committees which plan events, clinics, and parties. The Hallowe’en season is alive and well on the ice as the volunteer DJ plays “Monster Mash” and “Ghostbusters” while we curl. At Christmas we all don our Santa hats and get rid of the tacky gifts that we got from even older relatives. Then there are Valentine’s Day and St. Patrick’s Day where curlers search their closets for colourful curling pants with hearts or shamrocks.  At the end of the season we celebrate with play-offs and prizes.

And then we start looking forward to the fall. We oldies feel very lucky that we were adopted by the High Park curling family.

 

 

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Curling at its roots!

I had the distinct pleasure of volunteering with the Orangeville Curling Club for their annual Pond Spiel.

To this point, I had been curling for 3 seasons prior and had just joined the club. So I had had my fair share of different curling bonspiel experience from the traditional Meat-spiels to the interesting Glow in the Dark spiels.

I knew a bit of the history of the sport I had grown to love but this was the first time I would be able to experience it in the true form. Rather than just participating, I felt as in the true nature of the sport, volunteering was the way to go.

So there I was, 6 AM on a Saturday morning in the middle of Island Lake in Orangeville under the light of car headlights, dragging out curling stones in -20 degree temperatures to the middle of the lake to our prepared sheets. Having spent a day the previous week clearing the surface, scoring the ice and building a wind barrier, we were fairly set to go. After building a nice (and safe I might add) fire brazier and setting up warming areas, we were ready for the curlers to take to the ice.

We had the all the tradition and pomp you would expect from such an event, bagpiper, toasting a drink and the traditional first stone from a local official. The day went off without a hitch and our ice crew even got a chance to play an end with the EMS onsite helping out (we may have convinced some of them to try it out indoors).

My take away from the day will not be the 12 hours spent out on the ice but the pure enjoyment everyone seemed to have gotten out of experiencing curling in its purest form, out in the elements with only your skill to make the shot since your sweepers aren’t going to be able to help you out here.

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Weather can’t stop curling!

It was Foxy Ladies Curling Bonspiel time in Summerside PE and the weather was not cooperating. But have no fear! An off-Island team ignored a major road closure and traveled via the secondary roads to arrive in time for their Friday game.

And look who else drove in from NB, a fearless team that white knuckled their way through road whiteouts. The phone continued to ring constantly as teams asked to be rescheduled due to weather conditions. The draw masters laboured on but the games began. In the end only four teams had to withdraw.

The food and company was superb, the music was lively and the curling was competitive. Part of the fun was the costumes that were on in full display Friday and Saturday night.

Curlers are not faint of heart and will drive through nasty winter weather for the game and the company. Curling is a great social sport and of course there is the exercise and skill building.

I mean why would you stay home looking out the window as the snow blows around when there is curling to get to.

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