They're yelling for photos from Ontario's recent Mallspiel, so here's The Curling News to the rescue... with a first glance at the show that was the BDO Galt Curling Classic.
Arena ice, located in a shopping mall surrounded by some 167,000 (weekly) wandering souls. Right next to the food court, with an Asham Ontario store temporarily set up. And with a sixth lane of ice, "Sheet F", dedicated to community participation, where about 200 newbies got to try the sport for the first time. Not bad.
We haven't seen this sort of thing since... well, the Telus Classic inside the enormous West Edmonton Mall, back in 1995. Which The Curling News will be revisiting, along with so many other amazing archived stories – dating back to 1957 – in our upcoming 50th anniversary season. Have you subscribed today?
There will be a 2007 event, by the way... in fact the BDO Galt Curling Classic is now confirmed for the next three years. Don't miss it.
• Al Cameron speaks with Kevin Martin and John Morris in today's Calgary Herald (subscription only). Having lost just one game this season – the final of Gander's Don Bartlett Classic to the number-one rankedKerry Burtnyk – Martin had this to say about his brand-new squad:
There's a huge adjustment, just because I hadn't changed anything for so many years, and now I change everything. But 15 (wins) out of the first 16 games is a pretty strong start. John played very well (in Sunday's final). And I think I played 50 per cent – I made my first rock 100 per cent of the time and missed my second one 100 per cent of the time. And you don't win many curling games when you miss the last one all the time.
• According to today's St. Catharines Standard, local city councillors have broken the Ontario city's grants policy and voted to give free ice time to the M&M Meat Shops Canadian Juniors, which will overwhelm their town in February 2007.
A key factor in the decision to waive nearly $14,000 in rental fees was the prospect of St. Catharines' charms being highlighted during CBC-TV's two-day coverage of the event's finals.
"This television coverage is really fantastic and it means a lot to our community," said Doug Geddie, chairman of the host committee, after showing a clip from CBC's coverage of the 2001 championships – which was also hosted by St. Catharines. Geddie added that in addition to scenic shots, the city's name is included in television graphics and mentioned in on-air comments, and buying the same amount of coverage would cost $50,000, while "500,000 viewers tune in for a national curling event."
Councillor Peter Secord was bullish on the deal.
"You are talking a huge deal here," said Secord. "When we are sitting at the table, pie-in-the-sky is an event that would bring the CBC into town. That is one of the things we dream about. This event is the one we would love to have: St. Catharines on the big screens across the country. This is a no-brainer."
• Here's our curling logo-slash-mascot of the week – for no particular reason – the Chesapeake Crab...
• And finally: God help her, but Nerdygirl is addicted...