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Grand Slam of Curling returning to Yorkton
Published Thursday, March 7, 2019 5:56PM CST
Last Updated Thursday, March 7, 2019 7:02PM CST
The Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling tour will once again be hosted by the Yorkton Curling Club.
The specific event on the tour — the Meridian Canadian Open — will invite the top 16 men’s and women’s teams from the World Curling Tour. It will likely bring top competitors like Brad Gushue, Rachel Homan and Jennifer Jones.
Haley Madsen is a high school student and has been curling for just a few years but has already gained an appreciation for Jones’ talent.
“I've never really seen her play in real life before,” Madsen said. “And you know, when you're getting coached in your elementary years and even your high school years, that's the one person your coaches talk about."
Grand Slam Chairperson Gerry Adam is just as excited for the event.
“It's always great. The Grand Slam brings the best curlers from around the world to our little town. It's good for the city, good for curling and it's good for everybody to just come and watch and see how fabulous these guys are," he said.
Adam says that Yorkton was selected to host the event because of how popular it was when it was last there.
"I think the (curling) events that we've had over the past 20 years where the crowds were good, that's what they like,” he said. “They like to see 1,200 to 1,500 people in the stands all the time. When we hosted the event in (2014 and 2015), we had good crowds.”
"It means a lot to our community and to our club,” said Sharon Pedde, president of the Yorkton Curling Club. “It's so much fun and it's a great place to come together."
The excitement has spilled beyond the rink. Yorkton mayor Bob Maloney is expecting the tournament to bring thousands of fans to the city for the five-day long event.
“They’ll be looking for restaurants to eat in, buying gas, staying in hotels, so it's great for the local economy and terrific for tourism," he said.