Numbers needed to make curling in East Hants a reality

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LANTZ: The East Hants Curling Association is happy with the turnout for the first night of registration, although the numbers were below what they need for it to go ahead.

However, John Csutorka and George Prest understand there were a couple other events going on that night which may have taken people away who would have registered. A second registration night was set for Oct. 11, with a third one scheduled for Oct. 18 at the Todd Hunter Room, if necessary.

“It was a pretty decent night,” said Csutorka. “We didn’t get the numbers we wanted, but there were some other events taking place.”

He said they don’t plan to get going for the league—the actual games—until Oct. 26.

“Until that date, it’s all about development and registrations being held,” said Csutorka.

The Todd Hunter Room at the East Hants Sportsplex was the site for the recent registration night for the East Hants Curling Association on Oct. 4. Another night was set for Oct. 11 and a third, if needed, on Oct. 18. (Submitted photos)

On Oct. 11, the ice will be available for anyone to try it out. There will not be any organized activity but anyone can go out on the ice and throw a few rocks.

On October 18 beginning at 6:30 p.m., there will be experienced instructors available to give curling lessons for anyone who wants it. Some sheets may be free to throw a few rocks. There will be some equipment for participants, all one needs is clean footwear and to dress warm.

Prest said working with the Sportsplex started about two years ago when a man from Halifax approached the Curling Association to find a place where competitive curlers could curl on arena ice and a curling area for East Hants.

“That’s where the idea started of putting the curling rings on the second ice surface in Lantz,” he said. “It fell through during the second year.

“So we took it upon ourselves to see if we could buy the equipment ourselves, and this year we could do it. Now all we need are the people to sign up.”

He said it appears those people from East Hants playing at other clubs likely won’t come back to the local association.

Csutorka said having curling on the hockey ice isn’t novel—apparently they have been doing it for 20 years in Tatamagouche.

“We did have a chat with their manager/ice maker and he was encouraging and willing to help us out, but we still need the people,” he said.

To make it happen, the Association needs an absolute minimum of 32 daytime curlers and 32 evening curlers, just to pay the bills if they’re just paying for the ice time they use.

“We could conceivably pay for five hours, but only use two hours which is one curling game,” said Prest. “We can’t do that.”

He said they have a really good chance at hitting the target of 32-40 curlers. The HERH Tigers rec director have indicated, Prest said, they would like to use some ice time for curling, possibly including REC. Their ideal time would be 4-6 p.m., which is great for the Association as they wouldn’t be using it.

“If we can get a draw during the daytime, the school can use it, and we can do another draw in the evening, with at least 32 curlers in each one, we should be alright,” said Prest.

What happens if they can’t meet that number?

“I don’t want to even think about that,” said Prest.

For more information on the East Hants Curling Association, check out their Facebook page.