What Happens In Vegas... - Curling Day In Canada

It was 2018. The year I turned the big 4-0! My Dad and his wife took my husband and I to Vegas. We planned our trip around attending the World Men’s Curling Championship. All of us avid curling fans. And a chance to see Gushue and his boys was certainly an added bonus. The event was held at the Orleans Casino. It was a really cool atmosphere. As with most curling events I have been to it felt like everyone attending was your friend, regardless of what country or team you were there cheering for.

Friday, April 6 we were in line outside of the event centre, getting ready for some playoff curling. My husband got a call from back home (Saskatchewan) letting us know that there had been a horrible accident involving one of our provinces SJHL teams. The Humboldt Broncos. It honestly stopped us in our tracks. Others in the line (many from Canada) were hearing the same news and trying to comprehend the magnitude of this tragedy, as were we.

We truly enjoyed the rest of the weekend, but there was just a heavy feeling around the curling venue. There was non-stop chatter about what was going on back home. You could tell people were just hurting for those going through this nightmare. Throughout the rest of the weekend it seemed the news just kept getting worse….worse than any of us could have imagined. So many young lives lost. So tragically. Each draw there seemed to be more and more red and white in the stands, and the faithful green and white too.

Sunday we were spectators at a FANTASTIC final curling game between Edin and Gushue. What more could we as curling fans ask for. Two of the world’s best battling it out. It wasn’t meant to be for Gushue. Edin and his team were nearly flawless. I have watched MANY curling finals. These teams battle it out all year to be in this exact position. The heartbreak can honestly be hard to watch. The Gushue team just had a different vibe after losing that game. It was almost as though it was a time and place in this life where your heartbreak could not possibly compare to those of the mom’s and dad’s who were facing the harsh reality that their favorite hockey player was gone. And it seemed they all maybe had that on their mind.

The goose bump part of all this that I feel could only be created by being amongst the world’s best curling fans…….as we were leaving the Orleans venue, it was really just a giant wide line of people trying to get out of an event centre, as it is at the end of any sporting event. As we were moving down the escalator, a few curling fans started to sing O’Canada. Before it felt like one could blink, it spread through the lines of fans leaving the building. One beautiful rendition of our national anthem that I will truly never forget. It felt like we had an audience of some of the best young hockey players and a few members of their support staff watching us from above. At least that is what one hoped. The national anthem just for them from the curling world. Being a curling fan in that money….priceless.

Other Images: