What happened in the previous two weeks:
- Curling was featured in the “Ice Ca-Cabes” episode of the CBS show “Scorpion” on Dec. 31.
- The USWCA Scot Tour victory was voted as the Top U.S. Curling Moment for 2016 in fan voting.
- For a limited time only, there is a 50% off sale going on for Team USA apparel. There is also a limited inventory of curling-themed Denali blankets, marked down 20 %.
- We are thankful to local leader Karyn Cousins and the more than 25 volunteers from the Broomstones Curling Club who have signed up to assist with the Frozen Fenway “CryoMAX Curling Zone” promotions in Boston, Mass., this Saturday and also Jan. 14.
- Registration has now closed for the new USA Curling U18 National Championship, which will take place March 8-12 at the Milwaukee (Wis.) Curling Club. There were 20 men’s teams entered in total, in eight regions, and 21 women’s teams in nine regions. Combining these numbers with the overall Junior National Championship entries and comparing it with 2016 Junior Championship registration numbers, there are 13 more junior-aged women’s teams and two more junior-ages men’s teams signed up across the two events.
- Registration closes Sunday for the Level I and Level II USCA Officiating Courses Jan. 14-15, but there is still room in each course. The Level I Instructor course originally scheduled at the Bowling Green Curling Club for Jan. 14 is being pushed back as the club makes final preparations for opening its new dedicated curling facility.
- The clubs that have been selected to send teams to the 2017 USA Curling Arena National Championships have been announced. The championships are April 24-30 in Notre Dame, Ind. Team registration for the event opens Feb. 8.
- I had a follow-up call on Thursday with an Olympic Family sponsor exploring sponsorship opportunities with all winter NGBs in the lead-up to the 2018 Olympics and Paralympics, and have submitted additional information and revised proposals as requested.
- Mike Dellemann and I conferenced with USOC NGB Fundraising Manager Martha Johnson on Thursday to plan our strategy for participating in the 2017 USOC Challenge Grant Program, which will match up to $20,000 in funds raised this year. The USCA has received $150,000 in matching funds through this program in the previous five years.
- USA Curling Paralympic program sponsor Ki Mobility is currently working on producing customized wheelchairs for all eight members of the 2016- 17 National Team. The total value of this portion of the sponsorship will be approximately $25,000.
- We fell short of the goal of 40,000 visitors in December to trigger an additional $25,000 in media fees from the USOC for 2016. A lot has been learned through this campaign, however, and we are already working on a strategic traffic building plan for 2017 to reach higher fee payment tiers.
- Steve Emt, Kirk Black, Jimmy Joseph, Penny Greely and Justin Marshall have been named as Team USA for the 2017 World Wheelchair Curling Championship.
- The USCA HPP team of Nina Roth, Tabitha Peterson, Aileen Geving and Rebecca Hamilton finished second in the U.S. Open in Blaine, Minn., last weekend. Five other U.S. teams advanced to the quarterfinals in this event, including HPP teams led by Cory Christensen, Craig Brown and Hunter Clawson, and teams led by Brady Clark and Todd Birr.
- With five women’s and four men’s teams advancing from the Junior West Challenge Round, the field is now set for the 2017 USA Curling Junior National Championships taking place in Fargo, N.D., Jan. 15-21. The USCA Junior High Performance Program teams led by Madison Bear and Andrew Stopera both went undefeated in advancing from the Challenge Round.
- The Men’s and Women’s National Challenge Rounds are underway this week, in Blaine, Minn., and Waupaca, Wis., respectively. Live scoring – and web streaming from the men’s event, is available here.
- The field and draw schedule for the 2017 USA Curling Mixed Doubles Challenge Round has been announced. Twenty-two teams are competing in this event, Jan. 25-29 at Curl Mesabi in Eveleth, Minn.
Inside the curling world
- The Billings (MT) Curling Club—curling out of Centennial Ice Arena— has been approved as the newest USCA provisional member.
- Dakota Curling is making final preparations for the opening of its new dedicated curling facility in Lakeville, Minn., with a ribbon cutting ceremony set for Jan. 13th.
- The annual USCA membership reporting process is underway. To ensure your club’s voting rights at the 2017 Members’ Assembly, dues and rosters must be postmarked by Jan. 31. If you have questions about the reporting process, please contact Christy Hering.
- The annual payment to the WCF for the current stone and facility loan program payments has been submitted, with this year’s total over $181,000, as two clubs accelerated their stone repayment schedules. There remains one stone purchaser/curling club – originally Howell Ice World in New Jersey—that is delinquent on repayments and we are pursuing collection and/or reclamation of the stones.
What’s up next week:
- USOC NGB Fundraising Conference, Colorado Springs, Jan. 9-10.
- 2017 WFG Continental Cup of Curling, Las Vegas, Jan. 11-15.
- Frozen Fenway Street Curling event, Boston, Mass., Saturday, Jan. 14.
What’s coming two weeks from now (Jan. 15-21, 2017):
- 2017 USA Curling Junior Nationals begin, Jan. 15.
- USCA Operations Group teleconference, Jan. 17.
- First episode of Curling Night in America for 2016-17 airs on Jan. 19 on NBC Sports Network.