Beltline Bonspiel warms up crowds on a bitter winter weekend

The Beltline community and Lougheed House held their second annual Beltline Bonspiel on Saturaday, Feb. 17, at the historic residence on 13th Avenue S.W.

The event featured teams composed of members from various organizations and community associations around Calgary, including Beltline, Lougheed House, East Village, Inglewood, Sunalta, and the CBC.

The six teams involved threw curling rocks outdoors for the grand prize: the Brewery Trophy.

The massive trophy, made of sterling silver and similar in size to the Stanley Cup, was crafted in 1915, and had not been awarded since 1965 before the bonspiel was started last year.

Matt Masters, the self-proclaimed “Beltline Bonspiel general manager” and organizer of the event, was excited to witness his brainchild hit the ice once more.

“We were trying to come up with an event that would be a good winter-themed attraction,” said Masters in an interview.

“There had never been an ice rink flooded [at the Lougheed House]. It was such a success that we just jumped right at it again this year.”

While the weather was bitter this year, the attendees were anything but.

“Last year we had hot chocolate, this year we have booze and hot food,” said Masters.”Everything is amped up a little this year.”

While there was still a hot chocolate and coffee station for chilly folks to warm up at, the event also featured a beer garden sponsored by Village Brewery.

The event also drew a wide variety of sponsors, including the Calgary Stampede, Curlers Corner, and the Government of Alberta.

The Calgary Stampede’s Harry the Horse was even in attendance, giving children a good laugh.

Lougheed House was free to explore for the public over the course of the bonspiel, and hosted live musical performances in its restaurant.

“Everything is amped up a little this year,” said Masters.

The competitors saw the event as a great excuse to get festive, with teams incorporating Scottish bonnets and curling sweaters into their uniforms.

Live music was playing throughout the day, both inside the Lougheed House, as well as by the outdoor curling ice.

DJs from the University of Calgarys radio station CJSW came out to offer good vibrations throughout the day.

A massive bonfire blazed for people to warm up beside.

Everything is amped up a little this year – Matt Masters

There was also an additional curling lane for families and spectators to jump in and try curling out, along side the actual competition.

Last year’s Beltline Bonspiel boasted it was the only outdoor curling competition of its kind in the Calgary area, a title that it still holds.

About Riley Cassidy 4 Articles
As a writing and communications major in the journalism program at SAIT, Riley Cassidy worked as a reporter for The Press during the 2017-18 academic year.