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Set yourself a new challenge and enter playdowns

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The start of the curling season is a great time to set yourself new goals so, if you’re a recreational curler, why not aim high and enter playdowns this year?

The BC playdowns offer teams the chance to experience a professionally run event that has many elements of an elite event such as high-class officials, time-outs and formal liaisons.

Many teams also find that competing in playdowns helps them raise their game and improve because it provides them with the opportunity to play against different teams, some of whom have competed at national and international level.

Karen Anderson decided to enter her new team into the Okanagan Senior playdowns in 2015 to get some more competitive experience. Speaking about the event she said: “We enjoyed having the opportunity to play some of the best teams in our areas and making connections with other competitors. It is always a good learning experience to play teams such as Sandra Jenkins and Lil Blashko.

“By competing in playdowns we learned that we need to remain tenacious throughout the game and focus on making one shot at a time. We also learned that teams who want to experience good competition need to attend playdowns so we’ll be entering again this year.”

Entering playdowns is a simple process and if it is your first time entering then Curl BC will waive your competitor’s fee.

Playdowns for the BC championships are held in different locations each year and you can find out the location and date of each one by visiting www.curlbc.ca/playdowns and selecting the category you want to compete in. You can then click on the name of the playdown you want to be part of and it will take you directly to the entry form for that event.

Shannon Aleksic, Curl BC’s Competitions and High Performance Manager, said: “I would encourage a lot of club teams from across the province to enter playdowns as they are great events. Competing in these playdowns will help teams improve and, even if you don’t make it to the provincials, you will be better prepared for the rest of the season.”

If you want to take on a new challenge this year, visit www.curlbc.ca/playdowns.

Victoria to host 2017 Canadian Junior Curling Championships

Canada’s national junior curling champions will be crowned in Victoria in 2017, it was announced today by Curling Canada.

The 2017 Canadian Junior (Under 21) Men’s and Women’s Curling Championships will be staged Jan. 21-29 at the Archie Browning Sports Centre in Esquimalt (a suburb of Victoria), using the facility’s hockey arena and six-sheet curling rink to decide which teams will represent Canada at the 2017 World Junior Curling Championships in PyeongChang, South Korea.

“Our city has a rich history of hosting championship curling events, and we know the curlers and fans who will be here in 2017 will be treated to a wonderful experience,” said Keith Dagg, co-Chair of the Victoria host committee. “The Archie Browning Sports Centre is a first-class facility that will allow these talented teams to perform at their best.”

It will be the first time Victoria has hosted the Canadian Juniors since 2004 when a pair of Atlantic Canada teams — New Brunswick’s Ryan Sherrard and Nova Scotia’s Jill Mouzar — took gold. Victoria previously hosted the Canadian Junior Men’s Championship (the men’s and women’s events were combined in 1987) in 1979 when Alberta’s Mert Thompsett prevailed.

“The sport of curling is one of Canada’s favourite pastimes. The recent staging of both the 2014 Tim Hortons Brier and the 2013 Ford World Men’s Curling Championships are a testament to British Columbia’s ability to host these types of events,” said Peter Fassbender, provincial Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development. “We look forward as hosts for this Victoria-based competition to welcoming curling fans from across the country to this wonderful province and to once again make lasting, positive memories for all the athletes, coaches, judges, volunteers, their families and friends who will participate.”

It will be the sixth time British Columbia has hosted the combined Canadian Juniors; besides Victoria in 2004, previous host sites were North Vancouver in 1988, Vernon in 1992, Kelowna in 1999 and Salmon Arm in 2009. Prior to 1987, the Canadian Junior Women’s Championship was played in Fort St. John in 1984, in Chilliwack in 1978 and in Vancouver in 1971. Previous B.C.-hosted editions of the Canadian Junior Men’s Championship were in 1971 in Kamloops, 1961 in Prince George and 1951 in Nelson.

“We are so very proud and thrilled to be hosting the 2017 Canadian Junior Curling Championships here in Esquimalt at the Archie Browning Sports Centre,” said Esquimalt Mayor Barbara Desjardins. “We are a curling community with a rich tradition in the sport that includes promoting local youth curling. I know that visiting athletes and fans will appreciate the impressive upgrades we recently completed at our facility as well.”

B.C. teams have won eight Canadian junior championships — the most recent being Corryn Brown taking women’s gold in 2013 at Fort McMurray, Alta. Other previous winners were Brad Kuhn in 2000 at Moncton, N.B., Dean Joanisse in 1989 at Winnipeg, Mike Wood in 1988 at North Vancouver, Julie Sutton in 1987 at Prince Albert, Jodie Sutton in 1986 at Rouyn-Noranda, Que., Sandra Plut in 1982 at Winnipeg and Jerry Laughlin in 1961 at Prince George.

The wins by Wood and Joanisse marked back-to-back Canadian junior titles for Victoria-based teams.

“Curl BC is delighted that Victoria has been selected to host the 2017 Canadian Junior Championships,” said Curl BC Chief Executive Officer Scott Braley. “With a great organizing committee that has run several national and world championships supported by volunteers from the four local curling centres, Canada’s best young curlers will be in for a treat, as will the Victoria curling community.”

TSN, the official broadcaster of Curling Canada’s Season of Champions, will provide live and exclusive coverage across Canada of the women’s and men’s semifinals and finals.

“The Canadian Junior Championships are one of our most popular events, and it’s always a thrill to see the next generation of Canada’s curling stars perform on the national stage,” said Pat Ray, acting Chief Executive Officer for Curling Canada. “Victoria has done a terrific job in the past hosting national and international curling championships, and we’re expecting more of the same in 2017.”

With 14 teams in each gender (representing each of the 10 provinces in addition to Northern Ontario, the Northwest Territories, Yukon and Nunavut), the field will be split into two seven-team pools, with seeding based on win-loss records at the 2016 Canadian Juniors in Stratford, Ont. Teams will play a round robin within their pool, leading to a championship pool beginning on Wednesday, which will then lead to the weekend playoffs. Teams that don’t qualify for the championship pool will play a seeding pool to determine rankings for the 2018 Canadian Juniors (host site TBD). Meantime, non-playoff teams will participate in a mixed doubles competition.

The Canadian Junior Men’s Championship has been contested annually since its inception in 1950 in Quebec City. The first Canadian Junior Women’s Championship was played in 1971 at Vancouver.

Canada has won a leading 19 world junior men’s titles since 1975 and 10 women’s crowns since 1988. Canadian teams skipped by Manitoba’s Braden Calvert and Alberta’s Kelsey Rocque swept gold at the 2015 World Juniors in Tallinn, Estonia.

The 2017 World Juniors will be the official test event for the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea.

The 2016 Canadian Juniors are scheduled for Jan. 23-31 in Stratford, Ont. The Canadian champs will then move on to the 2016 World Juniors, March 5-13 in Erzurum, Turkey.

Daniels and Tardi win inaugural BC Junior Curling Tour event

The teams of Sarah Daniels and Tyler Tardi took a step closer to qualifying for the 2016 Tim Hortons BC Junior Curling Championships when they won the Anita Cochrane Memorial Cashspiel at Royal City Curling Club this weekend.

Skip Daniels, and her team of third Dezaray Hawes, second Marika Van Osch and lead Megan Daniels, were unbeaten in the competition and secured the title when Sarah made a draw to the button in the final to defeat Team Brown 7-6 in an extra end.

Kamloops skip Corryn Brown, third Erin Pincott, second Samantha Fisher and lead Sydney Fraser, also had a perfect record ahead of the final, winning all four of their pool games and easing through their semi-final 7-0.

Brown and Daniels last met in the 2015 Tim Hortons BC Women’s Championship final but on that occasion it was the Kamloops rink that came out on top.

Surrey’s Tyler Tardi was triumphant in the Men’s event, defeating Team Kiss 8-2 in the final.

Tardi’s team of third Daniel Wenzek, second Jordan Tardi, lead Nicholas Meister and fifth Sterling Middleton, were dominant throughout the weekend and did not lose a game.

Kiss, and his teammates third Nicholas Umbach, second Travis Cameron and lead Zach Umbach, had a more difficult route to the final as they were part of a three-way tie at the top of their pool but qualified for their semi-final by virtue of the last stone draw rule.

Tardi and Daniels both now top the BC Junior Curling Tour standings with four tour events remaining. The top two teams of each gender on the Tour will receive automatic qualification for the 2016 Tim Hortons BC Junior Championships which take place in Kamloops from December 29 – January 3.

The BC Junior Curling Tour was the brainchild of five-time BC Men’s champion Jim Cotter. Speaking about the tour he said: “The first Annual Anita Cochrane Memorial went great. All of the organizers and Royal City Curling Club did an amazing job and it was great to see 24 teams out there competing this early in the year.

“Junior cashspiels like this, along with the other four tour events, are a great training ground for these young teams.  The next goal is to expand the number of events on the tour so that all teams across BC can participate in at least one local spiel.  Every team that competed this weekend can walk away having learnt what they need to do to improve so they can be better at the next junior tour event that takes place in Abbotsford on Thanksgiving weekend”, he added.

The Anita Cochrane Memorial Junior Cashspiel was established in memory of Anita who was an inspirational ambassador of the game competing as a high performance athlete and also a coach. Anita’s parents kindly presented the teams with their trophies and spoke to the competitors about her legacy.

The other BC Junior Curling Tour events are:

  • 9-11: The Abbotsford Curling Club Junior Cashspiel
  • 30-Nov. 1:The Rick Cotter Memorial Cashspiel at Vernon Curling Club
  • 7-8:The Interior Beverages Junior Spiel at Kelowna Curling Club
  • 13-15:The Esquimalt Optimist Junior Cashspiel

For further information on the BC Junior Curling Tour visit www.curlbc.ca/bcjct.

Kamloops curler receives $1,000 scholarship

Reigning BC Junior champion Erin Pincott has been named as a recipient of the 2015 Curling Canada Foundation Scholarship.

The 20-year-old, who plays third on Team Brown, is one of 10 young curlers from across the country to receive a scholarship.

Erin, who is currently studying  at Thompson Rivers University, was part of the team that won the Canadian Junior Championships in 2013 and took silver at the 2015 CIS / Curling Canada Championships.

The $1,000 scholarships are funded by Canadian curling donors and supporters and aim to help college and university students with their education and curling costs.

Speaking about becoming a scholar, Erin said: “I am very honoured to have received this award! I know there are many deserving student athletes from all over the country that applied so when I found out I would be one of the recipients I was very grateful.

“This scholarship will definitely alleviate some of the stress associated with working, going to school full-time and curling. It will allow me to focus more on my studies as well as my curling training.”

A total of 60 young curlers applied for a scholarship and the panel looked at both the applicant’s academic and curling achievements, as well as the commitment that they have shown to the sport through volunteering and coaching.

Kelowna to host 2016 CIS/Curling Canada Championships

Trips to the 2017 Winter Universiade in Almaty, Kazakhstan, will be on the line when Canada’s best university curling teams gather in Kelowna, B.C., for the 2016 CIS/Curling Canada Canadian University Curling Championships.

The championships will be staged March 20-23 at the Kelowna Curling Club, it was announced jointly today by Curling Canada and Canadian Interuniversity Sport.

The winning teams in Kelowna will represent Canada at the 2017 Winter Universiade, scheduled for Jan. 28 to Feb. 8 in Almaty.

“We’re thrilled to see the CIS/Curling Canada championships return to British Columbia for the second time in four years,” said Graham Brown, who was named earlier this month the new chief executive officer of CIS. “The City of Kelowna has a long tradition of curling excellence and there is no doubt the organizing committee will offer our CIS student-athletes an unforgettable experience, especially with this year’s championship teams earning the opportunity to represent Canada at the 2017 Winter Universiade.”

It will be the ninth edition of the CIS/Curling Canada university nationals, and it will be the first time the event has been staged in Kelowna. It’s the second time the championships have been decided in B.C. after Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops hosted in 2013.

“We’re thrilled that the next generation of Canadian curling stars will be coming to Kelowna for the CIS/Curling Canada nationals,” said Peter Ellison, president of the Kelowna Curling Club. “We have a world-class facility that will allow these athletes to put on a great show, and the enthusiastic curling community of Kelowna will be in for a treat.”

At the 2015 CIS/Curling Canada championships, BC’s Team Brown, from Thompson Rivers University, took home the silver medal after losing a close game against Junior World Champion Kelsey Rocque’s University of Alberta team.

“University curling has continued to grow in Canada and we’re excited to see this event move to the Okanagan Valley,” said Pat Ray, Acting Chief Executive Officer for Curling Canada. “Considering what’s at stake in Kelowna, we’re expecting a wonderful display of curling from Canada’s best university players.”

(Article courtesy of Curling Canada)

Club Coach Youth workshop coming to Abbotsford

The Abbotsford Curling Club is going to be hosting a Club Coach Youth Workshop on Oct 3. The one-day workshop costs $50.00 + taxes

The philosophy of this workshop is to create a safe, fun and positive learning environment for kids. Participants will learn how to create an environment in which kids will have a positive learning experience while gaining basic curling skills.

This one-day workshop is ideal for parents and volunteers involved in club-based junior curling programs. Youth as young as 14 years of age may register for this workshop.
Learn about:

  • Running junior programs
  • Making ethical decisions
  • Emergency action plans
  • Volunteer recruitment & recognition
  • Basic technique, games, skills, activities and lots more

To register for this workshop please click here.

The deadline for registration is 11:45pm on Saturday, September 28.

Hosts for 2017 provincial championships announced

Abbotsford and Duncan will be home to BC’s best curlers when they host two of the province’s biggest curling championships in 2017.

BC’s female curlers are set to step onto the ice at Duncan Curling Club for the 2017 BC Scotties Tournament of Hearts, presented by Best Western, whilst Abbotsford Curling Club will be home to the competitors at the 2017 Canadian Direct BC Men’s Championship.

Both events will be televised on Sportsnet and could be the first step towards qualifying for the 2017 Roar of the Rings.

Duncan’s five-sheet facility, which hosted the 2014 AMJ Campbell Mixed Championship, will welcome the women from January 18-22, 2017. (It was previously advertised as January 25-29, 2017).

Brent Dellebuur, who will be chairing the organizing committee in Duncan, is looking forward to staging the 2017 BC Scotties. He said: “We are extremely pleased to be confirmed to host this event and look forward to the exposure it will give us on the provincial stage. We cherish the opportunity to host the finest ladies teams in our province with what could potentially lead to an Olympic trials berth.

“We look forward to the challenge of this event and are thrilled to be able to show the rest of the curling community what The Duncan Curling club at The Glen Harper Centre can do.”

Abbotsford Curling Club will welcome BC’s best male curlers to their six-sheet facility from February 8-12, 2017. The facility has previously hosted the 2012 Canadian Senior Curling Championships and the 2013 Masters Grand Slam of Curling.

Kent Bird, the new Manager at the Club, shared his enthusiasm about the 2017 BC Men’s Championship when he said: “The club is thrilled to be hosting such a prestigious event. We are in a transition period and the added exposure will greatly benefit our curling club and community. The members are very excited as well to be hosting another great event. We look forward to showing off our friendly atmosphere and provide BC’s best men’s curlers a great week of curling and hospitality.”

Curl BC’s Competitions and High Performance Manager, Shannon Aleksic, said: “We are thrilled  that Duncan and Abbotsford will be staging these Championship events in 2017. They are both excellent clubs with a history of staging successful competitions and I am sure they will be amazing hosts.”

The 2016 BC Scotties Tournament of Hearts, presented by Best Western, will be held at Coquitlam Curling Club and Nelson Curling Club is the host for the 2016 Canadian Direct Insurance BC Men’s Championship.

Pilot Men’s Tour to launch on the Island and in Thompson / Okanagan

The Curl BC Region 11 Men’s Bonspiel Tour, which includes a dozen club bonspiels and a season-ending tour championship, has been running in the Lower Mainland and Seattle since 2008. A pilot project is now underway to have similar bonspiel tours on Vancouver Island and in the Thompson/Okanagan this coming season with two teams from both areas qualifying to play in a BC bonspiel tour championship.

The four teams from the Island and Thompson/Okanagan will join up with 12 teams from Region 11 in late March at Cloverdale Curling Club to what would normally be the Region 11 Men’s Bonspiel Tour Championship into create a BC Bonspiel Tour Championship. All 16 teams in the event will qualify based on tour points earned at participating club bonspiels in their respective areas.

Richard Brower, who has been organizing the Region 11 Men’s Bonspiel Tour since its inception, is managing the pilot project to see if the bonspiel tour concept can work elsewhere in the province. The proposed Thompson/Okanagan and Island tours will need volunteer coordinators and commitments from clubs to go forward. The commitments are outlined below:

Regional Organizers

  • Contact clubs to confirm their commitment to having their men’s bonspiel take part in this pilot project
  • Compile the schedule of men’s bonspiels taking part and send out information on this schedule to clubs and curlers
  • Promote the project through posters, email communications, phone calls, etc.
  • Contact clubs to get results from their men’s bonspiels, compile the regional points standings of teams participating in the designated bonspiels, and circulate the points standings to clubs and curlers

Richard would be available to guide and assist the regional organizers from the Thompson/Okanagan and Vancouver Island.

Clubs

  • Agree to have their men’s bonspiels be part of this pilot project
  • Remit $5.00 per team participating in their men’s bonspiel (ie. 24 team bonspiel would pay $120) to a pool of money used to support travel and accommodation expenses for the two teams from their region qualifying to play in Cloverdale (Please note that on the Region 11 Men’s Bonspiel Tour participating clubs pay this same fee to support the Tour Championship)
  • Promote the pilot project by circulating information emails to their men’s league curlers, posting information on club bulletin boards, and including information in their men’s bonspiel packages
  • Provide results from their men’s bonspiels to the regional organizer, outlining the top four teams in the A, B and C events
  • Hopefully, by joining in on this pilot project, clubs will have a marketing tool and incentive for teams to take part in their men’s bonspiels.

Team Eligibility and Registration

The teams competing in the BC men’s bonspiel championship at Cloverdale would need to meet the same eligibility criteria that teams competing on the Region 11 Men’s Bonspiel Tour do, as outlined here. The eligibility requirements are similar to those of the BC Club Challenge, designed to exclude teams that are qualifying in Curl BC playdowns.

Teams would indicate their interest in qualifying for the Cloverdale event by registering through a form on the Curl BC website or through their regional organizer.
If you are interested in taking part in this pilot project, either as a regional organizer or as a club, please contact Richard Brower by emailing region11tour@gmail.com or calling 778-317-1071.

Curlers across BC to benefit from over $820,000 of funding

Eight curling centres in BC are going to be given a new lease on life after receiving grants totalling almost $830,000.

The clubs, which include Dawson Creek Curling Club, Nanaimo Curling Club and Kamloops Curling Club, are all beneficiaries of the Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program.

The Program is part of the Government investment into improving local infrastructure across the country to create a lasting legacy to celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary.

Dawson Creek Curling Club is set to receive $500,000 to help them recover from technical problems that caused them to close for the majority of the 2014/15 season.

An ammonia leakage in December last year forced both the curling club and the memorial rink to shut down, and left the facility in jeopardy of permanent closure.

The $500,000 grant, along with additional financial support from the City, ensures that the club can replace both the refrigeration system and the cement pad that the ice sheets sit on. These changes will not only benefit the curlers but will also allow the facility to host community events and trade shows.

Speaking about the grant, Club Manager Jeff Ginter said: “We are ecstatic to partner with the City of Dawson Creek and Western Economic Diversification Canada as we revitalize and upgrade our community’s only combination curling rink and multi-function event centre. Even after we lost our previous curling season, this is another fine example of our energy, momentum and optimism moving forward. We are proud to contribute to a healthy and vibrant community; one that supports continuous improvement and integrates generations.”

Another successful applicant was Nanaimo Curling who is set to receive $50,000 to help them develop the social space at their centre and host more events at their facility.

The grant will allow the Club to install a new heating and air conditioning system, build a new bar and replace the existing flooring.

Speaking about the funding, Club Manager Denise Wood said: “We’ve named the project ‘Top of the House’ and we hope that by renovating our social space we will be able to rent the club out to the community and welcome more people into our facility.”

Other curling centres that have benefited from the funding are:

  • Kamloops Curling Club which received $150,000 to replace their ice plant
  • Gibsons Curling Club will also be purchasing a new ice plant with their $50,100 grant
  • Salmon Arm Curling Centre gained $25,000 to replace their water treatment system and emissivity ceilings
  • Vernon Curling Club can replace their roof after receiving a grant of $23,276
  • Hope Curling Club is now able to repaint their exterior after receiving $5,100
  • Osoyoos International Curling Club will use it’s $20,236 grant for major renovations

Curl BC encouraged all centres in the province to apply for the Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program to help them improve their facilities and provided application guidance to several applicants. The majority of the funded projects should be completed by the end of 2017, in time for Canada’s 150th Anniversary celebrations.

Doug Bothamley passes away

It is with great sadness that we inform you that Doug Bothamley, who had been battling cancer, passed away on July 6, 2015.

Doug

Doug, who lived in Riondel, was a much admired coach, curler and friend to the curling community and will be sincerely missed by all who had the pleasure of knowing him.

As well as skipping teams at provincial level, Doug was a committed volunteer and was the Curl BC Regional Representative for Region 2.

A memorial service will be held in Doug’s honour at the Riondel Campground Beach on Sunday, August 2 at 1pm.

Our thoughts are with all of Doug’s family at this time.

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