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Curling Club Blog

Sun Life Logo

The men's Sunlife Bonspiel was held at HCC on March 25 and was sponsored by Alan and Steve Paton from Sun Life Financial in Huntsville.
Twelve teams competed in two divisions: Senior (60+) and Open (any age). Teams played 3 x 6 end games which were followed by a delicious smoked prime rib dinner.

Congratulations to Senior Champions
Skipped by Paul Sanderson with Len Brautigam, Mike Schultz, John Francis.
Senior A Champs


Congratulations to Open Champions South River team
Skipped by Hal Busch with, Frank Hill, Phil Taylor, Dave Stubbs.

Open A Champs


Thank you to our sponsor and all volunteers who made the event a tremendous success!!

See you next year!!

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The women's Fiesta De Marzo Bonspiel sponsored by Muskoka Gourmet was an affair "mucho excelente" and featured great curling, fabulous Mexican food, beverages, as well as curlers looked magnificent in costumes that captured the overall Fiesta de Marzo theme.

Thank you to Derek Gravelle from Muskoka Gourment whose generous support included providing each curler with delicious samples of Muskoka Gourment products to take home, as well as a tasting table for the event.

Thank you to all our sponsors for their fantastic support of Fiesta de Marzo;
Dr. Tim Lapp, Sandhill Nursery, Matt and Steve's Ceasars, The Cutter's Edge, Meat the Butcher, Deerhurst Resort, Fibre- Ladies Clothing, Artisans of Muskoka, The Record Shoppe Huntsville, BeeBAGZ, Lake of Bays Brewery.

Congratulations to the first draw and overall event winner, Team Ogryzlo, and to the second draw winner, Team Houle.

Overall and First Draw Winners
L-R Cara-Dawn Gilchrist, Cathy Ogryzlo, Sarah-Jane Simpson, Shelly McLean


Second Draw Winners
L-R Christine Dziewurski, Margo McKnight, Elaine Rowlands, Nancy Houle

Houle win

An event like this does not take place without the efforts of a great organizing team. Thank you to the organizing committee;

Nancy Houle, Marth Lapp, Kathleen Mair, Margo McKnight, Kerina Murray, Dawn Rigby, Lynn Southcott. 

Una Increíblemente Grande thank you to our volunteers who helped ensure the day ran smoothly;
Kitchen - Jennifer Cumming, Laurie Johnston, Scott Lasby, Kerina Murray, Joanne Osborne, Kim Scott
Drawmaster / Scorekeeper- Bob Gibb, Richard Burnett
Draw to the Button - John Murray
Bartenders -  John Kokonis, Cathy Ross, Richard Tousignant, 
Mary Ellen Hope - for her donation of a mucho bueno Margueritta Maker
Ice Makers - Rosey Adams, Lou D'Alessandro, Roy Sullivan 

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Fiesta muy grande!!!  Gran momento lo pasamos todos!!

Congratulations to Team Trussler from Parry Sound!
Winners of Team with the Best Costume!!!

3 Team Parry Sound

2 Team Hope jpg
1 Team Bionda 4 Decorations
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A fabulous time was had by all at the Levente Valentine's bonspiel.  Very big thanks are extended to our generous sponsor, Levante Roger's Cove and their retirement living consultant, Helen Thompson.

A heartfelt thank you to our volunteers;  Richard Burnett, Shelley Clouthier, Marielle Deurloo, Rachel De Sadeleer, Sue Hicks, Jonathan King, Marilyn Kreutzer, Martha Lapp, Ann Lasby, Scott Lasby, Mark Maslen, Shelly McLean, Kathy Ogryzlo, Mel Pegg, Jeff Verkley, Teresa Verkley,  Chris Zaludek, and Dave Zalude.

Levante First Draw, First place: Team Neil Hewitt

Neal Hewitt


Levante First Draw Second Place:  Team Jocko Houle



Second Draw First place:  Team Scott Verkley



Second Draw, Second place: Team Chris Sabourin



Our Yesterday’s … 

by Dennis Rolland

Shots Fired” at the Huntsville Curling Club

In the winter of 1972, Huntsville experienced several winter storms resulting in heavy snowfalls and significant accumulations. By the afternoon of Wednesday, March 15, 1972, the weather turned mild with rain, that was heavy at times.

That evening, at 6:30 PM, the Police received a “Shots Fired” report at the Huntsville Curling Club. At the same time, many members of the club were arriving for the 7 PM draw. Club President Bruce Petch had parked his 1966 Pontiac Bonneville next to Executive member Tim Green’s brand new 1972 Mercury Cougar alongside the rink. Bruce and Tim entered the rink building with the Police to find no one inside – it was still and silent – until it wasn’t. 

The silence was shattered by a loud “shot” as a wooden cross beam split in half lengthwise causing the Center Street peak ridge of the rink roof to buckle in slightly. While inside the rink, another thunderous “crack” split yet another timber. The building was immediately vacated as a collapse was imminent. 

The Police cordoned off the area around the curling club. Not even the cars could be moved. There was the utmost seriousness of concern since the private two-sheet Curling Rink at the Lake of Bays Britannia Hotel collapsed from snow load in 1959 claiming 3 lives. Mr. & Mrs. Eric Chudleigh of Chudleigh Apple Farms in Milton, and a 14-year-old boy all died, and 11 others were injured, some seriously. 

HCC members nailed the rink door closed with 6” spikes to prevent entry while an Emergency Executive meeting of those present hastily reviewed ideas to save the club. Ultimately all ideas, including shoveling off the roof, were dismissed because it was deemed too unsafe to go anywhere near the rink structure. By this time, the situation was critical, as the unrelenting rain continued timbers were heard spitting every 15 minutes. 

Executive member Ross Payne, who was also the Huntsville Fire Chief, proposed  “shearing” off the snow with fire hoses, gradually and in a balanced way, from bottom to top, using two pumper trucks located at the north and south sides of the rink building in an attempt to relieve the snow load. Ross would be positioned on Centre Street atop a 40 Foot Ladder truck to direct the operation. 
The Board approved the plan as it was the only safe plan. The fire equipment was positioned and the planned effort had barely begun, when suddenly, at exactly 8:45 PM, only 2 hours and 15 minutes after the “Shots Fired” call, a rapid succession of loud shots was heard, sounding like a machine gun, as a multitude of wooden roof timbers shattered sending the roof structure downwards. 

The massive and rapid increase of inside air pressure, as the structure collapsed, exploded the rink doors from their hinges sending them flying outwards. The side walls burst 15 feet off their foundations onto Bruce Petch’s 1966 black Pontiac Bonneville and Tim Green's brand new 1972 Mercury Cougar. The explosion was so intense, the 40-foot ladder fire truck on Centre Street was blown back, with Ross Payne atop. Ross landed with a roll, and stood up unscathed yelling “I’m Okay!”

Within seconds, the entire destroyed roof structure was on the ground. 

View from Veterans Way Looking West

Note: This picture was taken in 1972 before the 1981 Kitchen Addition

Photo Credit: Huntsville Forester, Huntsville Ontario – March 23, 197

View from Centre Street Looking East

Photo Credit: Huntsville Forester, Huntsville Ontario – March 23, 1972

View from Veterans Way Looking North

Photo Credit: Huntsville Forester, Huntsville Ontario – March 23, 1972

Note: This last picture shows Bruce Petch’s damaged 1966 Pontiac Bonneville and Tim Green’s 1972 Mercury Cougar, parked alongside the rink. This was the sickening condition of our beloved club, 51 years ago, in March 1972. 

To add insult to injury, in the days following the collapse, a youth, armed with a pellet gun, fired shots from Centre Street at our exposed viewing glass. One shot popped a hole in the plate glass of sheet 3 which remained in the glass for the next 50 years until 2021, when the 70-year-old single pane plate glass, installed in 1951, was replaced with thermal, tempered glass as part of the Phase 2 Club Energy Efficiency renovations. 

Those pellet gunshots and the shot that popped a hole in our sheet 3 glass were the only real “Shots Fired” at the Huntsville Curling Club. 

Our Yesterdays- The Don Lough Trophy and some History of the Men's Bonspiel

by: Dennis Rolland


The 1952 Don Lough Trophy

The original 1940’s Don Lough Trophy was lost to the fire of 1951. Don donated this beautiful replacement trophy, the Don Lough Trophy, which was presented to the Huntsville Curling Club for Men’s Annual Bonspiel Competition beginning in 1952. The first rink to win the trophy was the Orillia rink of Pat Murphy, Ted Thorington, Ralf Lang, and Reg Miller (Skip). The Don Lough Trophy was handed out annually until 1969. It resurfaced for three years in 1982, 1983, and 1984 before retiring again.  In 2019 the Don Lough Trophy resurfaced again for Annual Men’s Bonspiel Competition. 

The Men’s Spiel
The Men’s spiel is the longest-running spiel in Huntsville dating back to the spring of 1900. The Huntsville Curling Club has been fortunate to have many great sponsors and supporters over the years. 

Pictured above, from Left to Right, winners of the 1983 Huntsville Men’s Spiel, receiving the Don Lough Trophy, are, Ken Carstairs, Glen Howard, Bill Howard, and Russ Howard. 

In 1983, while Russ was a member of the Huntsville Curling Club, he skipped his father Bill Howard (Vice), his twenty-year-old brother Glenn (Second), and his best friend & Best Man, Kent Carstairs. The Russ Howard skipped team went on to win the Huntsville Curling Club Men’s Open Bonspiel.
Do you want to add your name to this prestigious trophy?? There are still openings in this year's men's spiel, being held on March 25th and sponsored by Sun Life. 

If you are 60 or older, click HERE to register

To play in the open division, click HERE to register


Come on into the Huntsville Curling Club this Saturday, January 21 between 10 am and 2 pm to support our new Bonspiel sponsor, "Hear Well, Be Well" Hearing Clinic. Not only is Hear Well, Be Well sponsoring this weekend's bonspiel, they are also providing a great fundraising opportunity for our Club.

If you book a No cost hearing test at their Huntsville location (73 King William St #105, Huntsville, ph (705)784-0330), the Club will receive $50 for each appointment. If 10 members schedule a hearing test, the Club will receive a $500 donation!

We hope you can spare 10 minutes to come into the Club and get the information on this great opportunity to take care of your hearing while helping support our capital fund!!  As an added bonus, all those who drop by the "Hear Well Be Well" Open House on Saturday will be entered into a prize draw.

Can't make it out this Saturday? Don't worry, you can still take advantage of the Free hearing test and support the club. Stay tuned for future communication with a link to book your test.



Sign-up for draw 3 is now open, and we ask that all changes be completed no later than Sunday, January 29th. This will allow our conveners time to set up teams and schedules.

Draw 3 begins Monday, February 6th, and ends Sunday, March 26th.

What do I need to do?

  • If you are happy with your league selections and no changes are required - you are done - nothing to do.
  • If you would like to make changes to leagues, simply log in and complete your registration
  • Log in using the link at the top of the Members Home page - if you don't see it when you log in, click on "Members Home" at the top in the menu bar
  • Draws 1/2 are locked, you can only change draw 3
  • to change leagues, simply delete the old league and add the new league - select draw 3 for the new league(s)
  • Any questions, reach out to Dave Rigby at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

How do I check what I signed up for in draw 3?

  • There is a new link on the home page (once you are logged in) - on the right-hand side - My Registration Info. Simply click on this link to see your leagues. See the images below

Home Page with link to review sign up
reg info

View of sign up details from Link - recaps all 3 draws if registered

my reg recap


The Huntsville Curling Club “Dutch Girl” Scoreboards, erected in December 1972, are 50 years old this month.
Who is the Dutch Girl and why is she on our scoreboards? 

This is the “Dutch Girl” Scoreboard Story.

By Dennis Rolland

The Collapse

At 5:45 PM on Wednesday, March 15, 1972, the wooden Glulam roof structure over our curling ice surface completely collapsed from snow load destroying the roof, walls, and Centre Street scoreboards. The block clubhouse, the four viewing windows and ice plant were not affected by the collapse. 

This was the second Huntsville Curling Club roof to collapse from snow loads. The first roof lasted 10 years, collapsing in 1910.  This roof lasted 21 years. The 1972 – 1973 Planning Committee, led by then President Bruce Petch, was tasked with the colossal endeavor to remove the collapsed roof, and rebuild with a design to last decades. Architects and Engineers recommended to the board that a flat steel roof 60 by 150 and no less than 14’ in height be built. The new walls and roof recommended were the strongest snow load design possible, capable of handling severe snow loads, and promised would serve the club for many decades. 

In November of 1972, the John Wheelwright Co of Weston Ontario was awarded the contract and began erecting our new rink steel structure. The rink construction included insulated walls and new fluorescent lighting that was completed for a January 13, 1973 open house where we opened our doors to the community once again. 

The Dutch Girl Scoreboards 

The previous scoreboards were destroyed when the roof collapsed. 

Doug Passmore and his wife Ruth were longtime members and volunteers of the Huntsville Curling Club. Thanks to the generosity of Doug, as the regional salesman for Schneider Meats at the time and his company, Schneider Meats, the scoreboards were donated to our Club. The widely known Schneider Meats “Dutch Girl” logo was all that was needed to identify the sponsor. 


Who was the Dutch Girl?

If you have ever bought a package of hotdogs, fried some bacon, or even walked through a grocery store meat department somewhere in Canada, driven down the 401 in Kitchener, or curled at the Huntsville Curling Club, you have seen Nancy Featherstone.

But you probably know her by her other name - the “Dutch Girl,” who is the blond, blue-eyed young woman in the white bonnet who smiles back at you from our beloved Huntsville Curling Club Scoreboards! 

Many people may not know there is an actual person behind that famous, made-in-Kitchener trademark; however, Nancy Featherstone is very real, and she lived close by in Central Ontario, in Victoria Harbour. 

Nancy was working as a child model at age 10 in the 1930s when she was contacted by a Toronto advertising agency looking for just the right girl to be the fresh face of a company that would become one of Canada's most recognizable brands.


Pictured above is the Highway 401 Schneiders sign, east of Kitchener, with our club’s Dutch Girl. The company was sold to Maple Leaf Foods in 2014, but the sign, with the Dutch Girl, is kept fully restored as a historic icon. Everyone knows the Dutch Girl logo, especially here at the Huntsville Curling Club.

2022-2023 Bonspiel Schedule

The Bonspiel Schedule is also located under Events>Bonspiels on the club website and on the club calendar.





Saturday January 21st, 2023

Hear Well Be Well, Winter Bonspiel

Mixed Open

Saturday February 11th, 2023

Levante Valentine Bonspiel

Mixed Open

Saturday February 25th, 2023

Sunlife Men’s Bonspiel


Saturday March 4th, 2023

Ladies Bonspiel


Saturday, March 10, 2023

Cogeco Regional

Mixed Open

Saturday March 18th, 2023

St. Patrick’s Day Bonspiel

Mixed Open 

Monday March 27th, Tuesday March 28th, 2023

Steak Spiel

HCC Members Event




To register for the HCC Senior (60+) Men's event, click   here


To register for the  HCC Men's (Any Age) event, click     here

Our Yesterdays ….by Dennis Rolland

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On February 8, 1951, the Huntsville Curling Club was Destroyed by fire. Ray Morris, our treasurer at the time, and who would become our president from 1952-1954, ran into the burning building to save four of the club’s most historic trophies, two under each arm. The rest of the club trophies and everything else the club owned, were lost to the fire.

This is the story of one of those four trophies, The Huntsville Trading Co. Cup. The Huntsville Trading Company Cup was donated to the Huntsville Curling Club in 1947 for the Annual Club Competition by owners Abraham and Israel Ginsberg. 

The Ginsberg family's history with our club dates back to the 1930s when they helped Allan White fundraise for a curling club building.  When the club began curling in the arena, Abraham and Israel were founding members of the 1940-revived club. Israel Ginsberg was the Mayor of Huntsville from 1930 to 1931, and again, from 1949 to 1950. The Ginsberg’s sold the business to Flotron in 1969.
The first rink to win the Trading Company Cup won it in the Huntsville Memorial Arena, the last year we curled at the arena. The rink was C. Grigg, N. Racicott, G. Denning, and S. Johnson. This trophy has been won by Club Presidents Ran Jupp and Wes Payne and was competed for until 1958. During that time frame, it was only in 1951, the year of the fire, that the trophy was not awarded to a Huntsville Curling Club rink.

The Huntsville Trading Company

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6 Veterans Way
Huntsville, Ontario
P1H 1V9

Phone: 705-789-4571

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The Huntsville Curling Club is a proud recipient of an Ontario Trillium Grant as well as an Ontario Sports and Recreation Community Fund Grant.

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