Kwalikum Secondary students are learning about sticks and stones at the Qualicum Beach Curling Club.
As part of the school’s physical education program, 24 students, many of whom are international students, went down to the rink recently to learn the fundamentals of curling.
Members of the club were on hand to teach the finer points of this popular winter game. They taught the eager students on how to properly launch the rock from the hack, sweep the ice, and how to score the game.
Fred Coppock, who organizes the program in partnership with Kwalikum, said that they’ve been doing this since September. He said club members have been keen to volunteer their time to help the students learn about the sport.
“The students appear to be happy with it and we’re happy to do it,” said Coppock.
The program start with off the ice-session session where the students learn what curling is all about, its rules, and other procedures.
Coppock said the program is a good way of giving youth a different perspective that curling is not only a sport for seniors. They want the students to learn that curling can be fun and challenging for all levels.
“A lot of older people curl but it’s a great sport and we want to have more youth involved in it,” said Coppock. “We have a junior curling program already and we’re hoping that some of this students may want to join in the future.”
Kwalikum Secondary teacher Ruth Stefanek said the international students in the program were all excited about curling. She too had the opportunity to learn the game.
The students were invited to joing the junior league that starts in January.
• Meanwhile, the club is getting ready for the Masters 55 bonspiel Jan. 3-5 that it will be co-hosting with the Parksville Curling Club. Around 40-teams are expected to take part in the first tournament of 2020.
• In other news, three junior members of the Parksville Curling Club will be competing at the 2020 BC Junior Curling Championships that will take place at the Victoria Curling Club, Dec. 28 to Jan. 2.
Ballenas Secondary Whalers Christian Klein-Beekman and Connor Litton will play second and lead, respectively, in a team skipped by Chris Parkinson of Comox. Matthew Davies is the fourth member who will play third in the only Island team that qualified for the championships.
Rebeccal Douglas, who regularly curls at Parksville Curling Club, will also be competing in Victoria as skip of team that consist of Brooke Reintjes, Delaena Reintjes and Bella Higdon.
The top junior women’s team and the two top junior men’s teams will represent BC at national championships taking place in Langley. The junior men were recently offered a second berth as a result of Nunavut withdrawing from the competition.
The New Holland Canadian Junior Curling Championships takes place from Jan. 18-26, 2020, at the George Preston Recreation Centre and Langley Curling Club.
— With a file from Curl BC