LITTLE CURRENT—Little Current will play host to the 2018 Men’s Northern Ontario Provincial Curling Championship next month, February 7 to 11, at the Northeast Town Recreation Centre.
“The event organizing is going well,” said Travelers Host Committee member Crystal Morra. “The volunteers are in order—we have a lot involved in helping make this event a success.”
Ms. Morra said that not all the teams are known to date, but it is official that Olympic Gold medalists Team Jacobs will be one of the teams competing, as will the local Jordan Chandler Rink.
Team Horgan of Curl Sudbury will also be attending, as will Team Johnston of Fort William and Team Koivula, also of Fort William.
The other rinks will be determined at the upcoming Travelers East Qualifier, January 18-21 in Sault Ste. Marie.
The Jordan Chandler Rink (Curl Sudbury and the Little Current Curling Club), skipped by Manitoulin’s Jordan Chandler, is made up of vice Sandy MacEwan, second Luc Ouimet and lead Lee Toner, qualified for the Travelers at the 2018 Men’s West Qualifier in Hearst earlier this month. Kyle Chandler will be joining the rink as fifth for the upcoming championship.
When asked how Mr. Chandler felt after his team qualified he responded, “relieved.”
“We are really looking forward to it,” added Mr. Chandler of the championships. “There should be a lot of hometown support and a great week of curling.”
The organizing committee will be bringing in a professional ice-maker to transform the arena.
“We will be having a professional ice-maker who will be overseeing turning the arena surface into a four sheet curling rink,” explained Ms. Morra. “He has assisted with the Brier ice in the past, which is pretty impressive.”
“When I have played at other arenas that have been turned into a curling rink, people are always surprised by the change,” said Mr. Chandler, who is also one of the event’s organizers. “It will be really interesting to see the difference at the Little Current arena.”
The organizers will be hosting an opening ceremony on Wednesday, February 7 at 6:30 pm with the draw to follow at 7:30 pm.
“We have invited the students from Little Current Public School to attend Thursday and watch throughout the day and junior curlers to attend the Thursday evening draw,” added Ms. Morra.
As for events associated with the Travelers, Skate Canada and Manitoulin Minor Hockey will be running the recreation centre canteen throughout the weekend as a fundraiser.
Ms. Morra urged any business or organization in the community who is organizing an event or a special meal or sale which coincides with the Travelers to contact her with information.
“We will be posting specials or events on a community board at the recreation centre,” said Ms. Morra.
Ms. Morra said that the draw times and additional information can be found online at littlecurrentcurling.com.
“We will be updating the website as more information becomes available,” she said. “The committee is looking forward to the event and a great week of curling.”
Event passes are available in advance at The Expositor office in Little Current or online at littlecurrentcurling.com for $90 (including tax). Event passes will also be available at the door, as will passes for individual draws.
The winning rink of the 2018 Men’s Northern Ontario Provincial Curling Championship will go on to represent Northern Ontario at the 2018 Tim Hortons Brier in Regina, March 3 to 11.