Good times at the curling club

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Well the saying says time flies when you’re having a good time and that certainly applies at the curling club!

I’m looking at the calendar and we’re into February with 15 weeks of curling (yes I counted them) already behind us and only eight weeks left in this season. January was a month of good times with four successful and fun events happening at the club.

The last big event in January was the Kelsey’s sponsored Rec League Bonspiel. Lorna, Daryl and MaryAnn had the club transformed into a “redneck hang-out” from top to bottom right on theme for this year’s spiel – even the dinner menu stayed on theme with pulled pork and cornbread served up to the curlers.

Curlers were right into the theme as well with most of them attired in camo gear, plaid shirts, dungarees, strange teeth and some exceptional multipurpose hats. Along with the fun there was some pretty good curling happening on the ice in the two full draws. Two teams in the first draw were first and second on points overall with Team Mixed Bags taking the trophy. Only a half point behind were the BarnFlies.

On the second draw Team Flintstones did some of the best curling of their season to place first on their draw with Team Mighty Stone Chuckers right behind them in second place fourth overall. Sean Cross, manager of Kelsey’s was on hand to present the trophy to the winners. A fun day for everyone.

Also thinking of the Rec League, Daryl wanted to let everyone know that 388 lbs of food was collected from teams for the Food Bank this year. Well done!

The Rec League bonspiel is often an indicator of which teams may do well in playoffs (which are fast approaching). While there is still some jockeying for position going on in the standings, Team Mixed Bags seem to have a lock on first place about 20 points ahead of On the Rocks. It will be interesting to see if they can sustain their lead through the end of the regular season.

In the last draw for the Thursday Men’s League Ken Patterson and his team of Anthony Czerwinski, Brian Clark, and Paul DeCloet finished in first place, Randy DeClercq with Pete Burns, Jamie Sinden, and Chris Buchner were in second. This Friday (today) there is a Men’s Tier 55 at the club all day and spectators are welcome. Kitchen volunteers are also needed.

The Ladies Tuesday Evening League completed their January E.R. Adams draw last week and sponsor Bob Smith was on hand to present the trophy to the winning team of Betty Tull, Carole Stephenson, Trudi Czerwinski, and Karen Rice. The Thursday Afternoon Ladies awarded the Escapes Draw trophy to the team of Gail Harris, Dorell Clark, Diane Burgess and Betty Patterson with sponsor Laura Magashazi on hand to make the presentation. The Ladies leagues are into their final draw before club championships in March.

At the Board of Directors meeting February 3rd, the Board identified two areas of the club that will be upgraded this year as this year’s project. The two areas are the Men’s locker room and the area behind the bar. The club will need to do fundraising in order to manage this project, plus we will rely on member volunteers to carry out the work needed for the renovations. If you want more info as to why these areas were targeted ask a Board member for an explanation.

Fundraising will begin immediately as the “Buy a Square” draw will begin this month. The Board has also decided to do another Auction Night as this format has been an excellent fundraiser in the past and it’s something that all members of the club can contribute to in some way. The actual date of the Auction Night is Saturday, April 6th beginning at 6 p.m. Each league of the club will be hearing more details about the auction this week and we hope all members will find a way of contributing to make this a great success. The goal for this project is $5,000 to pay for materials, etc. needed for the renovations. More information will be available as planning for the event continues. We already have been offered several great auction items. We hope the list will get longer each week. Stay tuned.

Events coming up in February – I’ve already mentioned the Men’s Tier 55 this Friday, the Big Brother’s Big Sister’s Bonspiel happens on Saturday the 9th, the Ladies Bronze Broom takes place February 25-26th and the Community Service Bonspiel sponsored by Good Redden Klosler finishes out the month on February 27th.

If you’re not curling in the last two events please get signed in to do your volunteer kitchen duty I see lots of spaces on the roster.

More news next time. Curling rocks!



The 59th annual Men’s Tobacco Belt Bonspiel took place at the TCC with a number of local teams or teams with local ties participating in the draws.

This bonspiel is very well supported by the community with three major sponsors supporting the trophies, 25 individual team sponsors, several different food sponsors like Otter Valley Foods, M&M Meat Shops, Kelsey’s and The Copper Mug. Breakfast was sponsored by the Belcher Family in memory of John and Dorothy Belcher who were great curling club members and supporters. Several sponsors donated items for the raffle table with Burns & Demeyer Insurance Brokers donating four Blue Jay tickets as the major prize and Kelsey’s supplied certificates for MVP’s for each team.

With three games completed the teams moving on to the Sunday semifinals of the C and D event or the finals of A and B event were set. Six of the eight local teams were still in the running for trophies among them Ken Patterson’s rink who would defeat another local team the Marc Babcock rink in one of the C semifinal games and in the other C semifinal Peter Burns and his rink were defeated by the Dale Ferns rink. Brian Stephenson and his rink were still alive in the D semis but were knocked out by the Ontonovich rink.

Finals got under way with a march in of the curlers and the singing of O Canada led by Dave Ramer and a toast to the curlers made by club directors Tracy Beattie and Terry Mattan.

For the finals three Tillsonburg teams were still in the running for trophies and the cash prizes. In the Tobacco Belt Bonspiel Championship A Event the two teams playing off were Travis Fanset along with his dad Dale Fanset and front end Tim March and Lloyd Graham against the Jonathan Peter rink of Dave Wagenheim, Jeff Klein and Jordan Becker out of the Ardsley Curling Club in NY. The game started with Fanset blanking the first end and picking up four in the second end. Jon came back in the 3rd end to count two and stay within reach but the 4th end saw the Peter rink missing shots, struggling with their weight on the keen ice, and the end finished with a count of three for the Fanset foursome to go up 7-2. Jonathan would get two back in the 5th but continued to have problems as the Fanset rink were hitting everything leaving the Peter rink nothing to hide behind and counted big in the 6th and the teams shook hands. Jon was disappointed in the outcome but happy to have made it that far in the bonspiel. The Fanset rink would repeat as the Belt Champions and the top cash prize winner.

In the Why Wait Taxi and Delivery B Trophy Event the Tillsonburg Rob Smith team of Michael Jackson, Kevin Martin and Paul Belcher took on the Phil Alexander team of Chatham Granite club in what would be the only game that would go the full eight ends plus an extra to decide the winners. The teams were well matched exchanging ends, with Smith up by one after the 5th end. Alexander counted trhee in the 6th Smith took three back in the 7th to be one up coming home without the hammer. Alexander got one for the tie and sent the game to the extra end. There were lots of rocks in play and some fine shot-making but Smith with hammer this time was able to score the win. It was a great game to watch and the fans were all happy that the TV view was available for watching shots at the far end!

The East Elgin Concrete Forming C Trophy Event had another Tillsonburg team competing. Ken Patterson with vice Craig Ireland, second Stefan Patterson and lead Daryl Malcolm met the Dale Ferns team of St. Thomas C. C. After four ends of play Ferns was up by one but Ken broke the game open in the 5th scoring four. I missed the 6th end but Patterson put the game out of reach in the 7th and the teams shook hands.

The D Event Town of Tillsonburg Trophy Event had the Jeff Ontonovich team from Ayr playing off against the Ilderton team of Scott Corby for trophy honours. This was the Ilderton foursome’s first time in the bonspiel but they certainly stood out when on the ice and became known as the ‘crazy pants’ team as they sported some of the pants made popular by the Norwegian Olsrud team. The Corby rink was up 4-2 after four ends of play. Ontonovich took one in the fifth but Corby put the game way out of reach in the 6th scoring big and not needing to ‘throw’ his last rock. Teams shook hands and headed for the bar.

Once again curlers playing in the spiel complimented our ice thanking Dale Fanset for the great curling and many were very impressed with the new look and renovations in the club. Everyone mentioned how much brighter the ice is. Thanks go out to all our wonderful sponsors and the volunteers who worked in the kitchen and helped run things for the spiel and a special thanks to Bonspiel Convener Les Peter who spends hours organizing this major bonspiel for the club.



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