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Special O spotlight: Basketball, curling are back

Athletes showed no rust as they returned to the curling rink after a two-year COVID-caused hiatus
S.Special O-curling
Athletes showed no rust as they returned to the curling rink after a two-year hiatus.

With the coming of the cold, Special O is coming in hot!

A reminder to all participants: Everyone 12 and up must be fully vaccinated (two doses) with a maximum group size of 50. Everyone must wear a mask when off the field of play.

Basketball started on Thursday, Nov. 4 in Gibsons Elementary Gym with head coach Samantha Giampa.

Samantha contributed this terrific summary:

“It was so wonderful to be back at Gibsons basketball on Thursday. We did our vaccination passport sign-in and then went right into a warm up and ball handling. (Of course, there was some friendly catch-up and chit-chat as we hadn’t seen each other all together in person for such a long time!)  We also managed some passing, shooting, and a quick drill to close. The coaches felt like the athletes were in great shape and did not look rusty at all. We think we are in for a fun season!”

Curling, another favourite sport for many, has started again thanks to the generosity of our community organizations. A $1,000 grant from the Sunshine Coast Community Foundation and a matching grant from Telus, provided the funding to purchase necessary equipment: sticks, grippers, brooms and sliders.

Coach Randy Younghusband (who doubles as Local Coordinator for SOSC) helped head coach Dave Sandness guide 13 athletes on Saturday, Nov. 6. From all accounts, the athletes were excited to be back at it! A huge thanks as well to Judy Macdonald, John Stewart and the Gibsons Curling club volunteers Diane Penonzek and Chris Reynolds.

Randy had this to say: “A lot of familiar faces getting together to complete the paperwork needed for Curling Canada’s return to sport protocols. While that delayed the return to ice, when the athletes did get out on the sheets, they were sporting some new, individual, equipment as part of the protocols.

When the games started, the athletes showed no rust after a two-year hiatus! The weight of deliveries was great; there were a lot of rocks in play, a bit of focus on the handle/turns of the rocks, and a few take-outs! It was the typical vibe that makes curling such a good sport: supportive, enjoyable, a few celebrations and positive etiquette.”

Don’t forget. Programs like these and others depend not only on financial generosity but also that of time! Volunteers are desperately needed to ensure SOSC’s continuance of sports. Training is free. Anyone interested can contact Allyson Pearson at imaparadis@dccnet.com for more information.

I told you we were ready. Now it’s go time!