The 12th edition of the Super Seniors Square Bonspiel is sweeping its way into the Cochrane Curling Centre starting today and is once again expected to be one of the largest, if not the largest, bonspiels of the season.
Chair and drawmaster Doug Campbell says 140 curlers will be participating in the bonspiel that continues until Sunday. Most of the draws are in the daytime but there is some play on Thursday and Friday night.
Thirty-five teams are participating, ranging from an average age of 52 to an average age of 82. The youngest curler is 50 and the oldest is 88. Besides the Cochrane area, other teams are coming from Calgary, Okotoks, Canmore, and Airdrie.
The design of the bonspiel is unique and makes it particularly enjoyable.
"We have seven squares with five teams in each, and then we play a round-robin," explains Campbell. "So you play against your other four other peer groups, and when I say peer, I mean we have matched them as closely as we can by age and by skill level."
There are both competitive and recreational divisions.
It's a cash spiel where teams receive $20 per win and $300 if they win their square. Various other prizes will be available. The registration fee includes a Saturday night banquet in the upper curling lounge.
Two Pharmacy has returned as the bonspiel's platinum sponsor. Campbell says they have been loyal supporters of the bonspiel since day one.
A record 49 teams participated in the last Super Squares bonspiel in March this year. It was held later than normal due to the pandemic.
If you drop by the Spray Lake Sawmills Family Sports Centre on weekdays, you'll notice the curling centre is a beehive of activity.
Campbell says daytime curling is almost as full as it can get with mornings and afternoons booked from Monday to Thursday. A sturling league, where players use sticks, runs Friday from 1 to 2 p.m.
"It's been a very good season in Cochrane all of October and into November. Everybody's enjoying the ice and the opportunity to get back together again."