Hugely successful 2013 Canadian Juniors wrap up at MacDonald Island Park


February 10, 2013 (Fort McMurray, AB) – A pair of national Junior curling champions were crowned this weekend as the 2013 M&M Meat Shops Canadian Junior Curling Championships came to a close after 10 days of competition and special events at the Suncor Community Leisure Centre and Fort McMurray Oilsands Curling Club.

The national event, co-hosted by Fort McMurray Oilsands Curling Club and MacDonald Island Park, saw 120 athletes and coaches from 10 provinces and three territories and hundreds of parents descend on Fort McMurray along with the thousands of spectators that attended at CNRL Arena 2 and Fort McMurray Oilsands Curling Club.

“What a special 10 days as we played host to the nation,” said Jodie Mercier, Host Committee Co-Chair and General Manager of Sport and Recreation at MacDonald Island Park. “The Junior Nationals were about bringing the deepest and most talented Junior curling field in the world to Fort McMurray, but more importantly, the event served as way to demonstrate the true nature of our community to what we know are now ambassadors for our region.”

Team Manitoba and skip Matt Dunstone captured the men’s side of the draw by defeating Team Alberta 4-3 in Saturday night’s Final, which was broadcast on TSN live across Canada along with Sunday’s women’s Final, won by skip Corynn Brown and Team British Columbia, 6-3 winners over Team Manitoba. Both teams advance to the World Junior Curling Championships in Sochi, Russia later this month.

A number of notable attendees were part of the 2013 Juniors, including TSN SportsCentre anchor Dan O’Toole, who acted as on-ice Master of Ceremonies for the men’s and women’s Finals and Closing Ceremonies. Six-time Canadian and two-time world women’s champion Colleen Jones was on the sidelines in support of her son, Nova Scotia men’s second Luke Saunders, while Fort McMurray native and Cheryl Bernard rink second Lori Olson-Johns delivered the keynote address at the Canadian Junior Curling Association Awards Banquet on February 8.

Long time TSN host and play by play announcer Vic Rauter called the men’s and women’s Finals, as two-time Canadian and world champion Russ Howard served as colour commentator.

The event was successful because of the tremendous support of the community. Over $250,000 was raised in direct funding and in-kind sponsorship, while over 170 volunteers and contributors from Fort McMurray Oilsands Curling Club and the ‘Mi Team’ at MacDonald Island Park assured the 2013 Juniors set a new standard for the event, which will take place in Liverpool, Nova Scotia in 2014.

“Over 3,500 volunteer hours went into the delivery of the 2013 Juniors and it was that commitment from people in our community that drove the event to be successful,” said Tyler Spitzer, Host Committee Co-Chair and President of the Fort McMurray Oilsands Curling Club. “We can’t say enough about the excellence of our volunteers and our community partners, especially Diamond partners Nexen Inc. and Aluma Systems for their leadership.”

The Host Committee thanks its many community partners for their strong support of the 2013 Juniors. Partners included:

·         Diamond: Aluma Systems and Nexen Inc.

·         House: Diversified Transportation and Mix 103.7 FM

·         Gold: Fort McMurray Airport Authority, Suncor Energy, 100.5 K-Rock, Country 93.3 FM and Rock 97.9 FM

·         Silver: AECON, All North Consultants, Fort McMurray Hotel Group, Jadene Spitzer RE/MAX, KAOS 91.1 FM, RE/MAX Fort McMurray, Lulu     Photography, Syncrude Canada and West Canadian

·         Bronze: Finning, McMurray Law Office, Rohit Communities and Save-On-Foods

·         Friends of the Juniors: Alberta Sport, Recreation, Parks & Wildlife Foundation, ATCO Electric, Jacos and SMS Equipment

          Rings: Corry-Lynn Shantz RE/MAX, Jet Ice, Nalco, Stantec, TJ Campbell RE/MAX, Joe’s Custom Woodwork and McMurray Aviation

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