Curling 101 at Saturday open house

Staff writer
February 21, 2014 01:00 AM

Over the past few weeks we've all enjoyed watching the Olympics and all that this great coming together of nations and athletes brings every four years.

We've watched sports that we seldom see, exotic sports foreign to our Canadian experience. Surely few of us have slid headfirst down an icy hill at more than 120 km per hour, or for that matter, even feet first. And while we all know hockey, few of us have ever skated in the extra long, straight knife-sharp edges that are speed skating blades.

So too, many of you have watched our very Canadian pastime called curling.

The numbers that television surveys show indicate that more people who have never curled watch curling than those that have. It seems you love to watch this game of precision and seemingly easy execution. But, many of you have questions and misunderstandings about this wonderful sport.

The Gibsons Curling Club is going to help you understand the game of curling in a very real, hands-on way. This Saturday, Feb. 22, from 1 to 4 p.m., the doors will be open at the club. There will be experienced curlers on hand to explain and to allow you to touch our game in a very real way. There is no charge for this open house event.

How much does one of those curling rocks weigh? How much pressure does it take to push one down the ice? What do curlers wear on their feet that allows them to slide so easily? Why does everyone have to yell when they play the game of curling? How do those measuring devices work that we see every so often? What does sweeping do anyway? How do they make the rock curl one way or the other?

These are all questions we know you have, because we get asked them all the time.

"We'll be happy to show you how the game is played, to let you try throwing a rock and to teach you more about the game," said club president Juanita Wannamaker. "Bring the whole family. You've seen it on TV, now come on out and try it yourself."


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