2019 News Release

5th Annual Curlers Care Supporting Our Military Families, Parry Sound
was held on February 22 and 23, 2019 raised almost $13,000

The 5th Annual Curlers Care 2-4 Supporting Military Families Bonspiel. was held at the Parry Sound Curling Club February 22 and 23.  This is a unique bonspiel in that there are only two curlers on each team with each game consisting of only 4 ends making play quick and fun for curlers and non-curlers alike.  This event gives not only curlers, but the whole Parry Sound community a chance to support and say thank you to our servicemen and women and veterans.

The event, originated here in Parry Sound by Ray Pavlove and Tom Traversy, is growing across Canada with 18 bonspiels now being held  in places such as: Ottawa, Edmonton, Chatham, Martensville, Sask., Dalmeny, Sask., Richmond Hill, Ennismore, and North Bay

This year, 40 teams, split into five pools, spent two days curling, eating, drinking, and making new friends. Teams all curled one game on Friday evening and enjoyed complimentary chicken wings thanks in part to M & M Food Market with musical entertainment provided by Harbour.  All the teams returned Saturday to play two more games, beginning with morning coffee and muffins provided by Tim Horton’s and a sponsored lunch for veterans thanks to RTP Mechanical.    

Opening ceremonies were held on Saturday with Donald Sanderson piping the Colour Party from 22 Wing North Bay, the 295 MacPherson Air Cadets, mayor Jamie McGarvey, veterans, sponsors, and curlers onto the ice. The MC, Jim Hanna, provided opening greetings and introductions followed by a Toast to the Piper and O Canada led by Comrade Tom Traversy. Padre Larry Freeman gave an opening prayer and the Ceremonial First Rock was thrown by Parry Sound’s own curling legend, Marian McIsaac. The opening ceremonies were concluded with a group photo taken by Bob Gilman under the Peace Tower Canada flag. The Colour Party was then piped off the ice and it was back to curling.
After all teams played their scheduled three games, the winners from each pool were decided and those five teams took to the ice for a shoot-to-the-button contest to decide the overall winners.
The main sponsor of this bonspiel, Bill Connor and the staff at Connor Industries, provided the delicious turkey dinner which was prepared by chef Jim MacCoubrey. Closing ceremonies and presentations followed, emceed by Jim Hanna.  

Pool A sponsored by Parry Sound Legion Branch 117 winners were: Robin Dyck and Ian Burgess
Pool B sponsored by Royal Bank winners were: Garry Jacobson and Larry Simons
Pool C sponsored by Ainsworth Inc. winners were: Melissa Hayhurst and Al Bourgeois
Pool D sponsored by Ben and Carol Hansen winners were: Jami Quathamer and Lisa Kraus
Pool E sponsored by Ken and Nancy Gallinger winners were: Tracey Sitts and Julie Truscott

The overall bonspiel winners and CONNOR CUP Champions were:  Jami Quathamer and Lisa Kraus.  “As Parry Sounders we were delighted to participate in this relaxed format tournament with a purpose of ‘giving back’ and with its roots in our hometown. Jami is a military veteran and as such understands firsthand the needs of military family support centres.  We are fairly new to curling so we went into this just expecting to have fun–and fun and comradery were in abundance.  Looking forward to next year.” said winner Lisa. The winners were awarded event patches as well as cheese donated by Maple Dale Cheese and coffee donated by Planet Bean.

A silent auction was held during the bonspiel in the Parry Sound Curling Club lounge.  Thank you for all of the donations of silent auction items.  Many thanks to Deanna Jackson and Trudie Johnson for organizing the auction; to Chef, Jim MacCoubrey and his helpers for their delicious meals and to drawmasters Ron and Joanne Gill for their invaluable assistance. As well, many thanks to the volunteers on the registration desk whose hard work and long hours helped make this event so successful and to the Parry Sound Curling Club who was proud to Support Military Families for the fifth year, and at the same time promote the great game of curling.

This year’s event raised $12,797. Representing the Military Family Resource Centre at CFB North Bay was Tessa Clermont, the Executive Director, who spoke on the role of the MFRC which provides support to military personnel, veterans and their families.  Tessa expressed her gratitude to everyone for their generosity and support in meeting the needs of the MFRC., “The Curlers Care Tournament in Parry Sound is an incredible event supporting military and veteran families. The funds raised enable the team at the North Bay Military Family Resource Centre (MFRC) to achieve our mission, which is to provide program and services that foster strong community and family relationships in response to the unique needs of military families throughout Northeastern Ontario. We were honoured to be included as a beneficiary and thankful for the generosity shown by the Parry Sound community.”

Guest speaker, Major Tony Matheson, spoke on his 33 years of service with the Canadian Air Force, including his 18 different career postings to places such as: Alaska, Texas, Florida, Afghanistan, Kuwait, Cold Lake, Alberta and North Bay all complemented by a very entertaining slide presentation.
Cheques were presented to CFB Borden MFRC representative, Beth McDonald, in the amount of $2,057 and to Tessa Clermont, Executive Director of the CFB North Bay 22 Wing MFRC in the amount of $10,740. As Tom Traversy concluded, after the performance of his original song, The Message, “it is those of us who helped raise these funds who get the most out of being able to support, in some small way, those men, women and their families who give so much of themselves for our country. It will be our honour to do it again next year!