Fort Frances Curling Club rebrands to be more welcoming

By Allan Bradbury
Staff Writer

The Fort Frances Curling Club has changed its public facing name to be known as the Curl Fort Frances Community Centre (CFCC).

Similarly the Port Arthur Curling Club in Thunder Bay was rechristened as the Port Arthur Curling Centre. The Sudbury Curling Club changed its name to Curl Sudbury in 2017 and other curling clubs are doing the same across the country in an effort to expand the sport.

The initial announcement came via the club’s Facebook page along with a new logo.

Media Chair for CFCC Christine Denby says the former logo featuring a moose and curling rings was close to 20 years old.

“I texted our club president Ron Silver and said ‘hey Ron, how old is that, how long have we been using it?’” Denby said of the logo.

The logo finds its origins in the club hosting provincials back in 2006.

“One of our long-time members Tom Fry initiated a contest for a logo, because if we were hosting the province we needed something to put on signs and other things,” Denby said. “So that’s where the moose came about, and we’ve been using different pieces of that. More and more we’ve realized that we need a really good version of our moose, we wanted something cleaned up.”

Denby’s son Jon, helped with the new logo design and her other son Alex is helping to update the website.

The new logo features a different moose from the previous on the background of curling rings in the Northern Ontario green and yellow colours as well as the new name.

“We’re also recognizing we wanted to move away from the term ‘club’; we wanted to be more inclusive,” Denby said. “We played around with what we already had for our website, (which was in the URL) ‘curl Fort Frances.’ Then this summer we came up with the Curl Fort Frances Community Centre.”

They want to be known as a community centre because the building doesn’t uniquely host curling. The space has been known to host conferences, weddings, the Fort Frances Chamber of Commerce Business Expo, the Fort Frances Gun and Hobby show and many other events.”

Registration is now open for the new curling season.

Most of the daytime and evening leagues will be back in similar time slots as they have been in the past but the Centre is trying something new this year with the addition of stick curling.

Stick curling is a different segment of curling played in two-person teams where you use a stick to propel the stones down the ice rather than getting down on the ice to do a traditional release from the hack, it might look a bit more like shuffleboard than curling in some ways.

According to the Canadian Stick Curling Association there are a few other differences. Games are played in six ends with six rocks thrown per end. Teams stay at opposite sides of the rink aside from during a timeout so each team member skips, and calls the shots for half the game. Rocks can only be swept after they’ve crossed the far hog line and no rocks can be removed until after three rocks have been played.

The benefits to this version of the game mean it takes less time – a game can be played in around one hour. It’s a good introduction to the game and helps to improve accuracy. It also is easy for players with physical limitations or disabilities.

Along with its usual junior curling, the Centre is planning to host a junior curling camp in October when kids will be off school on Friday Oct. 27 through the weekend.

The International Falls Curling Club will also return to the Centre on Tuesday nights and host its annual bonspiel during International Falls’ Ice Box Days in January.

The Centre will also play host to Northern Ontario Provincial events in the new year and there will also be a few weekend bonspiels as well.

Online registration is running until Sept. 10 with payment via e-transfer. In-person registration nights are Sept. 12 and 13 from 6:30-8 p.m. Prices are available at