New Generation of Curlers Hits The Ice

With the Swan Hills curling arena opening its doors again this season after a hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, grade 7-12 students from Swan Hills School are diving into the world of curling as part of their physical education curriculum. Led by their teachers and community volunteers, Al and Bev Arsenault, Janelle Torvalson, and Marilyn MacClellend, the students are getting the chance to learn and play this beloved winter sport.

For many students, this is their first experience with curling, although some had tried the sport a few times before the pandemic disrupted regular activities. The opportunity to learn from experienced volunteers has sparked excitement among the students, who are eager to try their hand at the sport.

The curling unit, which will continue for three weeks into March, is not just about learning the basics. A select few students will be chosen to form teams to compete in the Pembina Hills School Division Bonspiel in Westlock on March 19. This event will test their newly acquired skills and provide a platform for some friendly competition.

The involvement of volunteers like the Arsenaults, Torvalson, and MacClellend highlights the strong community spirit in Swan Hills. Their dedication to teaching and mentoring the next generation of curlers is invaluable, and their efforts are sure to leave a lasting impact on the students involved.

As the sound of stones sliding across the ice fills the arena once again, it's clear that curling has found a special place in the hearts of Swan Hills students. With guidance from enthusiastic volunteers and the support of the community, these students are not just learning a sport but also building valuable life skills like teamwork, sportsmanship, and perseverance.

Dean LaBerge, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Grizzly Gazette