The Comox Valley Curling Club put on a party this past weekend as they hosted the first ever Wild, Wild West Men’s Bonspiel, with signature sponsor Royal LePage of Courtenay.
The club was decked out with bison skulls from Black Creek, wagon wheels from Merville and saddles, tack, ropes and bales of hay, compliments of our neighbours at the barn. There were cowboys hitting the trail from Victoria, Vancouver and Campbell River. Not to mention the cowgirls doing a tremendous job behind the scenes keeping the draw in order, flipping flapjacks, helping with the bar duties and general clean-up around the club.
Art Meyers of Royal LePage and Ron Schmidt (Assente Wealth Management) provided the entertainment on Friday evening as they introduced teams to the Calcutta and pried open the wallets of cautious bidders. Art is a great storyteller, with a sense of humour that was contagious and enjoyed by all.
Saturday afternoon featured the skills competition shootout. After a physically demanding process of getting rocks down the sheet, in a hurry, Tony Pisto (Scotia McLeod) made his final shot and walked away with the prize, a seven-inch tablet. Then the dinner bell rang and our own Comox Valley Caterers served a fabulous prime rib dinner. Thanks Mark, Becky and crew.
When the dust cleared on Sunday it came down to the semifinals and final games. Only the 16 qualifiers remained in the competition and it was time to say “happy trails” to those heading home.
The Assente Wealth Management A event was certainly the barnburner everyone expected it to be as a pair of teams well known to each other faced off. In the eighth end it had the makings of an extra end but Ray Michell with John LaPoint, Jade Jensen and Don Pennell were able to secure the win over Ron Schmidt with Ray’s final shot. Ron had defeated local Tracy Branch in the semi while Ray handled Gerry Labbe of Campbell River.
We welcome our new B event sponsor, ABC Printing and Signs and there was another exciting final game that did go the full distance with an extra end. Local Richard Tanguay, Andy Quant, Fred Pugh and skip’s son Eric Tanguay, claimed the hardware over Campbell River’s Daryl Knowles putting Randy Wiwchar and Cody Hall third and fourth.
Rick Thomson of Colonial Countertops was asked to present himself the C event trophy after a rematch against local Terry Kirkoski. “We played these guys our first game Friday and didn’t do so well, so we were looking forward to second chance,” said a teammate of the Wayne Harris, Rick Thompson, Alan deJersey and Chuck Cave squad. The win left Jack Holden at third and Dean Hodgson fourth.
The D event sponsored by Scotia McLeod came down to a Courtenay/Campbell River duel that saw the May rink skipped by Ed Schmuland with Kevin May, Blaire Bezaire and Travis Hartling come out on top over Silvio Alberti. Brian Gisel of Victoria and local Mike Imrie claimed third and fourth.
The bonspiel committee worked hard to provide this special weekend and succeeded in their goal to raise the bar for future men’s curling events, they deserve tremendous praise for their efforts. Coupled with that is the support we saw from the community and from within the club. The bonspiel thanks everyone who gave up some time to help out.
“We thank all sponsors old and new for jumping on the buckboard in support of this annual Men’s Curling Bonspiel,” an event spokesperson said.
– Comox Valley Men’s Curling Bonspiel