Pittsburgh Curling Club

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Pittsburgh Curling Club
Current logo & pin design of the Pittsburgh Curling Club
Current logo & pin design of the Pittsburgh Curling Club
Location Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Arena Island Sports Center
7600 Grand Ave., Pittsburgh, PA 15225
Information
Established 2002
Club type Arena
USCA region Grand National Curling Club
Sheets of ice Five
Website http://www.pittsburghcurlingclub.com

The Pittsburgh Curling Club (or PCC) is a curling club located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It is one of only four curling clubs in Pennsylvania, the other three being the Philadelphia Curling Club, the Bucks County Curling Club, and the Anthracite Curling Club (formally the Scranton Curling Club). The PCC is an arena curling club that was founded in 2002 with 12 members, and as of 2009 it has grown to include over 120 members.[1]

Origin[edit]

The Pittsburgh Curling Club was founded in May 2002, after months of emails and discussions between several ex-pat Canadians and local Pittsburgh residents.[2] The twelve founding members rented ice for 26 weeks at Robert Morris University (RMU) Island Sports Center to start offering Learn-to-Curl sessions. Initially, the members had to draw the curling sheet lines and circles by hand prior to playing their games.[3] But as of 2006, the lines are painted on the ice prior to the start of the season.

In 2007, the Pittsburgh Curling Club received its 501(c)(3) status as a charitable organization.[4] The mission of the club is:

...to teach, develop, promote and encourage the sport of Curling; to develop youth and adult programs that lead to local, national and international competition; to coordinate and develop interscholastic competition; and to teach the sport to youth organizations as well as to interested adults by creating public awareness and appreciation for the sport.[5]

Facility[edit]

The PCC curls at the Robert Morris University Island Sports Center, which is on Neville Island, west of Pittsburgh, and has two indoor rinks (Clearview and Olympic) and two semi-enclosed, multi-purpose rinks (Stadium and Garden).[6] From late fall to early spring, the PCC uses the Stadium rink. In September and April, the warmer weather causes the PCC to move to the indoor Olympic rink. The PCC's summer bonspiel TropiCurl is held in the Clearview rink.

Leagues and Programs[edit]

In the 2008–2009 season, the club ran a league one day per week, held Learn-to-Curl sessions for over 650 brand new curlers, and ran programs for youth (ages 10–17) and junior (ages 18–21) curlers.

Leagues[edit]

The PCC curling league runs from October to March. It is structured as an open, ladder league. As an open league, any combination of men, women, youth, junior, and/or wheelchair curlers can form a team.[7] The ladder system or league system allows teams to move between different divisions in the league depending on their records.

Learn-to-Curl Sessions[edit]

Introductory Learn-to-Curl sessions are held on unused ice sheets during the league and also in September and April outside of the regular league season. Sessions include a video introduction to the sport, stretching exercises, delivery and sweeping instruction taught by the club's United States Curling Association Level 1 Instructors, followed by a shortened curling game between the participants.[8]

Community Outreach Programs[edit]

The Pittsburgh Curling Club offers free Learn-to-Curl sessions to charitable organizations in the Pittsburgh area. Past participants include:

  • Tickets for Kids: This charity gives out tickets to sporting, cultural, educational, and family entertainment activities.[9]
  • HOPE Network: This charity offers sports, fitness, and recreation opportunities for persons with disabilities.[10]

Bonspiels[edit]

The Pittsburgh Curling Club hosts two annual bonspiels.

  • Steelspiel: held in March as an end of the year "funspiel" for members.
  • TropiCurl: held in July, it's an "open" format bonspiel (for teams made up of any combination of men, women and juniors) that attracts curlers from all over the USA and Canada.

TropiCurl[edit]

Named for a pun on the word tropical, TropiCurl is held during the warm summer months, usually on the July 4th weekend. As an arena curling club, the summer is the only time the PCC can afford to rent enough arena ice in order to do all of the pre-bonspiel ice preparation (i.e. two days of flooding and scraping). Without this preparation, the ice, which is typically used for hockey and figure skating, would not be suitable for bonspiel curling. With the arena being able to fit five sheets, TropiCurl is able to host up to 48 teams for four days of curling.

Past TropiCurl Winners[edit]

Affiliations[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]