55th Annual Jam Pail Bonspiel
Medicine Hat’s longest running sporting event, the Jam Pail Bonspiel, takes place February 20 & 21 at the Kinplex. Registration is now open and the event is FREE.
For the two day bonspiel, the ice at the Kinplex is converted into 13 curling rinks and more than 400 students from Grades 3 to 6 participate. The bonspiel was originally created to provide school students with an activity during Teacher’s Convention that was focused on participation and fun. For many, it is their first introduction to the concept of curling. Attention is directed towards participation and fun. Every participant gets a ribbon – from First Place to Eighth Place in each pool.
The Jam Pail Bonspiel got its name from the early years of curling when tin pails used for storing jam were filled with water and frozen to use as curling rocks. The City uses a similar frozen-container method during the bonspiel at the Kinplex.
Back this year is the popular “Open Category” which does not have an age limitation. It gives families the opportunity to play the game together, from school students to grandparents. It is also an opportunity for anyone who has been curious about the Jam Pail Bonspiel, to try it out. Open teams must have at least one adult player on the team.
“Over the years, the bonspiel has evolved into a family-oriented event with parents as scorekeepers/supervisors to the participating students,” says Natalie Sauer, Superintendent of Recreation and a former Jam Pail Bonspiel participant. “Many parents of our current curlers played when they were students and I believe we are now working on third generation participants. What better way to enjoy the event than to let them all on the ice together!”
The Open Competition will take place on Thursday, February 21, in conjunction with the Grade 5 & 6 competition (Grades 3 & 4 play on Wednesday). Registration forms are available at www.medicinehat.ca/jampailbonspiel and are due by Friday, February 1, 2019.
The Jam Pail Bonspiel is organized by the City of Medicine Hat, in partnership with members of the Medicine Hat Curling Club and the local school divisions.
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