Curl Fort Frances Community Centre hosts regional championship this week

By Allan Bradbury
Staff Writer

Starting on Wednesday the Curl Fort Frances Community Centre will host 16 curling teams from across Northern Ontario for the Northern Ontario Curling Club Championships.

“These Championships cater specifically to club-level curlers who may not have the time or resources to compete at the professional level but who have the skills to represent their country at a higher level,” said Danny Lamoureux, interim CEO of Curling Canada in a Nov. 2023 press release.

There will be a men’s and women’s team representing the Curl Fort Frances Community Centre.

The men’s team is skipped by Adam Bolen, who will compete alongside vice Adam Esselink, second, Grant Swire, Lead Maxime Trottier and alternate, Gord Hoskins.

The women’s team is skipped by Kim Beaudry who is competing alongside vice Barb Roy, second Victoria Beaudry and lead Taylor Sopoticuk.

Team Silver out of the Fort William Curling Club also features locally grown talent in Christopher Silver and Owen Riches. Lead Travis Showalter also comes from the area.

It was announced last fall that the winners of the Canadian championship will compete against a US team in September 2024. So the teams which won the Everest Canadian Club Championship last fall, will play in a new North American Championship, sponsored by Everest Funeral Concierge in September 2024. Team Dan Sherrard, representing Alberta won the men’s division and Team Abby Burgess of New Brunswick won the women’s division at the Club Championships last November at the Assiniboine Curling Club in Winnipeg.

The last team from Northern Ontario to win the Club championship was in 2021 when Team Tracey Larocque from the Fort William Curling Club in Thunder Bay won the women’s division.

The men’s tournament will be played in a three division bracket while the women’s is set up as a round-robin tournament.

Games begin on Thursday morning, starting with an all men’s draw at 9:30 a.m. with the second draw of the day at 2 p.m. and opening ceremonies at 6:30 p.m. followed by an evening draw at 7:30. Friday draw times are 9:30 a.m., 2:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Saturday draws are 10 a.m., 2:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Sunday Draws have semi finals scheduled for 9:30 a.m. and finals at 1 p.m.

Admission is $2 per draw or $5 for a weekend pass.