By Matthew Dunn, Contributing Writer
Marlborough – Members of the Corridor 9/495 Regional Chamber of Commerce recently participated in a networking event at the NorthStar Ice Sports, where they also were given the chance to learn and try the sport of curling. The Marlborough Curling Club (MCC) co-hosted the event with the chamber.
A sport that became popular to watch during the Winter Olympics, curling combines skill, technique and careful planning- a combination reminiscent of chess and bowling played on a slippery frozen surface. A great hobby accessible to almost all ages, the Marlborough Curling Club adds a social aspect to the game for its members.
Ken Tonis, a board member of the Marlborough Curling Club, played an integral part in putting on the event and is always looking to expand the sport in the Metrowest area
“Curling is an extremely accessible sport for anyone to play,” he said. “Whether you are 9 or 99, everyone can play this game. We have equipment that will allow anyone to play.”
The club’s Learn to Curl sessions include about 45 minutes of on and off ice instruction to teach all elements of the game from delivery to sweeping to scoring. The participants then play mini games for the remainder of the session.
“By the end of the two-hour session, people will feel a lot more comfortable with playing the game and we hope they will be back to join us for one of our league nights,” Tonis said.
Founded in 2016, the MCC is one of a growing number of curling clubs across Massachusetts that aim to accommodate an increased interest in the game.
“Several members of Broomstones Curling Club (in Wayland) saw a need for other opportunities to allow people to curl in the Metrowest area. Since Broomstones was at capacity for more than 10 years, there was no place for interested parties to curl,” Tonis explained. “With the help of Russ Lemcke from Cape Cod Curling Club, the club began holding open houses and Learn to Curls in August of 2016.”
Although participation and involvement in the area is increasing steadily, Tonis knows creating a network with businesses in the area is a great way to drive sustained interest and continue to grow the sport. With this in mind, Tonis worked to create a jointly sponsored event with the Corridor 9/495 Regional Chamber of Commerce.
“We want to become part of the business community. We want to build relationships with other businesses in order to help grow the sport in our area. This event allowed us to get in front of some of these businesses and we are looking forward to building these relationships,” Tonis said.
Learning to curl and becoming involved in the sport is truly accessible to all through the Marlborough Curling Club, with an array of options and ways for anyone with an interest to start curling.
“We host several Learn to Curl sessions throughout the year which are then followed by a five-week mini-league,” Tonis explained. “We have six of these sessions throughout the year and unlike many dedicated clubs, we are able to curl all year round. We also have a street curling kit (using synthetic ice), and several floor curling kits that we can bring to events in the community, or at local schools.”
More information about the Marlborough Curling Club can be found at http://marlboroughcurlingclub.org.