Jim Smith Memorial Bonspiel
The Vermilion Curling Club hosted the 17th Annual Jim Smith Memorial Junior Curling Bonspiel from January 31 – February 1. According to volunteer Doug McCrae, junior curling has been happening in Vermilion for over 50 years. The bonspiel was split up into three divisions of Grades 4 - 6, Junior High, and Senior High. The tournament was at maximum capacity with 30 teams participating. Teams travelled from Vegreville, Elk Point, Lloydminster, Wainwright, Kitscoty, Islay, Mannville, Innisfree, and Vermilion. “Curling is a great Canadian sport and you can do it all your life. It’s easier to learn when you are young, and everywhere you go in Canada, there’s a curling rink. We have a great ice maker in Vermilion and people are appreciative because even the youngest students can make some great shots, so we would like to thank Rick McKenzie. We would also like to thank everyone for their generous community and area sponsorship; it is much appreciated and is what enables us to give prizes to every curler,” said McCrae. The bonspiel banquet included 250 people, and everyone enjoyed the weekend of curling. “You get to meet new people and it’s a great way to learn a new sport. It’s a great environment,” said Emily Fluney, youth competitor from Islay.