Volunteer force ready for Meridian Canadian Open

While there has been a long ‘to-do-list’ in preparation for this week’s The Meridian Canadian Open things are in readiness.

The key thing is the ice is ready, said Gerry Adam who has been spearheading the volunteers and making sure everything is ready.

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“Having the ice prepared in time, that’s huge,” he said in an interview with Yorkton This Week Monday morning. He said having the ice is the primary concern, and everything falls into place.

In terms of the ice a crew of volunteers, about 15, worked with icemaker Mark Shurek from Manitoba over the weekend to get the rings in and the flooding done.

Monday afternoon a group of young local curlers will be asked to throw a few stones just to see how they react on the newly installed arena ice, said Adam.

“Maybe I’ll even get out and throw a few just to say I did,” he added with a smile.

As it stood Monday morning the ice will be ready as teams begin practice Tuesday at noon, with each team having 45-minutes to test the ice, said Adam.

While volunteers were at work helping with the ice, they are just part of a much larger pool of helpers poised to make things run smoothly this week.

“We have close to 200 (volunteers). That’s quite a few more than we had (in 2015 when the event was last held in the city),” said Adam, adding that having extra help is never a bad thing at an event like the Open.

Adam said having three years go by without a major curling event probably helped with volunteers.

“Everybody was excited to have it back again,” he said, adding they wanted to be part of that return.

The volunteers will be busy with a range of jobs from time keeping, recording statistics, selling 50/50s, working the information booth and anything else where a set of extra hands is required, offered Adam.

With a few teams already in the city, and the rest rolling in throughout today, Adam said he is looking forward to the stones starting to rumble down the ice, adding the event should play to great crowds all week.

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