R.I.P. Chevy

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What can we possibly say about the sudden passing of Don Chevrier (left, with curling cohort Don Duguid, circa Salt Lake City 2002) that hasn’t been said in the last couple of days? The “voice of God” has been silenced, and as a result there have been plenty of media laudations. In keeping with the style of this here TCN Blog, here’s a few writeups that lie just off the beaten path, that you might not have come across yet... so look here and also here, if you please.

It is certainly a feather on one’s cap to be labelled (by NBC’s Dick Ebersol) as one of the two “greatest all-around sports announcing talents in North American history.” The other? The legendary Jim McKay ...

Some tribute stories also mentioned current CBC curling legend Don Wittman, who is sadly missing this year’s Grand Slam of Curling broadcasts (thus far, anyway). Paul Friesen has a good one located here. Our thoughts and best wishes go out to Don and his family.

And now, prepare yeself for one of the biggest clickfests in TCN Blog history. Begin!

• Do you know the Discovery Channel show How It’s Made? Well, the show will finally feature the making of curling stones on tonight’s Episode No. 15 (9:00m ET on the Science Channel), which also looks at refrigerators, aluminium baseball bats and opalescent glass.

The show will make its debut on Canada’s Discovery Channel on January 15... and we’ve even listed the episode in the JVC Curling TV Guide in the upcoming January issue of The Curling News!

“We actually went to Wales, to the quarry itself,” said Nathalie Dallaire of Productions Maj, the show’s Montreal-based production company. “Then we finished up at Canada Curling Stone in London, Ontario.”

Speaking of CCS, there’s a fantastic feature on outdoor – or Open Air – curling in said January issue, including a sidebar on a world-famous rock band’s search for curling stones. Make sure you subscribe today, because you simply don’t want to miss this one!

• The San Francisco Bay Area Curling Club is pumped: they had a TV feature air Monday night on the local NBC station; they’re hosting an open house tomorrow ay 8:00pm at Sharksice in San Jose; and of course they’ll be watching the December 23 broadcast of the Korbel Elite Curling Challenge from the Rockefeller Center in New York, which airs at 2:30pm eastern time.

TCN Blog readers, of course, are aware of the show and also the fact that it will now mark Peja Lindholm’s final North American television appearance ...

• Now over to Mexico, where Alice and Pabu are excited about Mexico City’s first outdoor ice rink. Naturally, they’ve made the call for curling to get on the agenda ...

• There’s lots of media interest in The National down in “The Hawk”; such as local stuff, Halifax stuff (here and also here), good old CP wire, their competitors CanWest and, of course, CBC, too. In fact, the host broadcaster is also big-time: in addition to semi-final and final action on the Mother Corp. network this weekend, each draw has a match webstreamed live from the CBC dedicated curling page. Hardcore fans will note this is a CurlTV production, delivered to CBC ...

• The new Grand Slam website is rocking, too, located here... and of course there’s The National subsite, over here ...

• Yes, The Hawk is popular even without The Ferb. The question now is: will he be ready for playdowns in February?

• Santa is coming: but how does the jolly one know if he’s at a curler’s house?

- Instead of cookies and milk, he finds pins from an obscure curling event
- All the Christmas music playing is recorded by a bagpiper
- A wee man is walking around grumbling. Santa thinks he’s an elf, until he sees “Icemaker” written on his back
- As he exits, a sign attached to the chimney says “No Alcohol Beyond This Point.”

Good stuff, and you can find these and more in this recent column from Joe Pavia of the Ottawa Sun ...

• Wheelchair curling icon Chris Daw is hanging up his Extender, at least for this season. The CCA story is here, and there’s a CanWest story here, although wheelchaircurling.com had the story first.

Daw, who is busy promoting the sport in an off-ice role, was also recently elected as curling’s first-ever board member to Athletes Can, and while he won’t be wearing the national uniform this year, Canadians should be happy that he didn’t leave the country altogether ...

• Meanwhile, is the Jim Armstrongwheelchair controversy really over yet...?

• The competition schedule for Vancouver 2010 has been released ...

• Here’s a look at the Ingerlund gals who did so well in B-Division action at the recent Le Gruyère European Championships ...

• Hate to rain on a parade, but we don’t believe Mr. Watkins is the world’s oldest curler. The Curling News did a story a couple of years ago on Regina’s Phil Ward, who we think is still going strong at age 102. In fact, spies recently told us he still drives himelf from the seniors home to the Tartan Curling Club! Any comment, Guinness?

• Multiple sclerosis? No problem for this brave gal... just go curling!

• Here’s a curling-themed computer wallpaper for you ...

• Here’s a look at the defending BC men’s champions, who have a bye to this year’s provincial ...

• And here’s a peek at Mr. Brad Gushue’s biggest challenge on The Rock, good old Mark Noseworthy ...

• Al Cameron says two of Jeff Stoughton’s teammates have undergone disciplinary action, but so has a team in Saskatchewan – in a matter of speaking – for prize splitting ...

• Mabel DeWare and Bud Gerthhave been named Honourary Chairs of the 2009 World Men’s Curling Championship in Moncton. DeWare skipped the only team from New Brunswick to win the Canadian women’s title, back in 1963. She was also vice-chair of the 1980 Air Canada Silver Broom men’s worlds in Moncton and the 1985 Brier. Gerth was chairman of the 1980 Broom and also chaired the Moncton 100 in 1990, the largest cashspiel ever held ...

Here’s a preview of January’s Ramada Perth Masters, which will see current stars Glenn Howard) and blasts from the past (Eddie Werenich) make the trip to Scotland in January...

• Looks like amateur photographer Takeshi loves his BalancePlus shoes ...

• Texas Dan tells us the second annual Texas Open Bonspiel is on deck for April 11-13, and it sounds like a hoot ...

• Speaking of hoots, Duluth’s annual House of Hearts Celeb/Charity Bonspiel takes place during the closing weekend of the Brier, and the organizers plan to charter a party bus departing from Winnipeg – and the Keith’s Patch, no doubt – directly to the spiel. Goodness ...

• Finally, where the heck are Willie and Wissel, the two curling trophies from December 11’s Entrepreneur Curling Bonspiel in Apeldoorn, Netherlands? They’ve gone missing, but this here blog would indicate they are on a great adventure. How about that?

What’s surprising is the entire caper has garnered some Dutch press, and things seem to be coming to a head for January 6... although we’re not sure why, nor in what context. Perhaps a sudden influx of comments and suggestions from TCN Bloggers – please click on “comment” – would take these escapades truly international? Who knows... but let’s find out, shall we?

And on that note, the TCN Blog is officially on vacation until January 4 or so. Merry Ho Ho, everyone ...