Whether you are brand new to the sport or an experienced curler from another club, there is likely a lot to learn about club operations and protocols. The following information is intended to provide you with a brief overview and orientation to the club.
I have signed up for a league. Will I be contacted prior to my first game? What are some basics I should know about how the leagues operate?
Each league will have some slight differences in how it functions, but generally the following basics are common across the club. Each league is organized by a volunteer coordinator who sets up the schedule ("the draw") for the league. The exact number of teams in each league is finalized very close to the end of September each year. The convenor then establishes the schedule and sends this information out to each skip. It is the skip's responsibility to contact the members of the team prior to the first game to confirm the date and time of the first game. Thereafter, the schedule is posted on a bulletin board assigned to each league and the schedule is also posted on the club website. Each league will have a list of people who have indicated that they wish to spare. These names are also posted on the league bulletin board and on the website. If you wish to spare for a league, you should do so when you fill out your registration form, or if you wish to do so later in the season, you should contact the office. If you become a spare for another league, you can spare up to five times during the season if you are registered as a once per week curler. If you are registered for two or more leagues, you can spare an unlimited number of times. Non-club members who spare are required to pay $20 per time. If you are going to be away for a game, you will be responsible for arranging for your own spare and then letting the skip know. It is best to begin arranging for your spare as far in advance as possible as it is sometimes quite difficult to find a spare.
How do I get a club nametag?
There are sign-up sheets posted on a variety of bulletin boards throughout the club. Print your name on one of these forms. Orders are placed with the supplier every few weeks. When the name tags are ready, that information is posted at the bar. Pay the bartender for your name tag when you pick it up.
Where can I get additional instruction?
The club runs four clinics throughout the year (October, November, January and February). These are free and are offered at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. Sign-up sheets for these clinics are posted on the easel in the Main Lounge about three weeks in advance of each clinic. In addition, you can come out and practice on your own at no cost. Available times for practice are posted in the club and on the website.
How do I obtain a locker?
Locate an empty locker in the change room and then go to the office (or call) and request that locker. There is a $25 annual fee for the locker rental. Whether you have a locker or not, members are expected to change in the change rooms. The lounges are not for changing shoes or storing personal belongings when you are on the ice.
Where can I obtain curling equipment or clothing?
The club has one of the best Pro Shops in the region and carries a full line of shoes, brooms, sticks, gloves, and apparel. A list of items for sale is posted on the website. A display of some of the items that are for sale is located in one of the trophy cases in the Main Lounge. Stop in to the office during Monday to Friday business hours and one of the staff will be pleased to assist you in your purchase. At the beginning of the curling season and just prior to Christmas, the Pro Shop will be open for one week to help you with purchases to start the season or for Christmas shopping.
Can I register or spare in more than one league?
Annual fees are based on the number of leagues in which you want to play beginning with once per week up to unlimited. This information is located on the registration form that is available on the website. If you want to increase the number of leagues in which you participate, fees can be adjusted as the season goes along, providing space is available in a league.
In some clubs, the rock is set out for the next curler. Why don't we do this at the LCC?
Primarily, this is a safety reason. Experience has taught us that it is much safer to leave the stones to the side of the hack rather than placing an unattended stone at the hack. What we really want is for the next curler to get into the hack and get ready to throw the next stone once the just-delivered stone is on its way to the house. This keeps play moving along and helps the teams meet the two-hour time limit. The club strictly enforces the two-hour time limit for league play. In 2010, a time clock was installed to assist with this expectation. When the clock is set, a buzzer will sound when there are 10 minutes left to play. Teams will finish the end they are playing and may not begin another end.
Our ice surface looks narrower. Am I imagining this?
Actually, the sheets of ice at the London Curling Club are a bit narrower than at most clubs. This is because the club purchased the old Jubilee Skating Rink in 1915 and did not increase the width of the base surface. Because each sheet is a little narrower than regulation, there is an "in house" rule that a rock that is 50% or more over a side line, after it comes to rest, is taken out of play. As well, the narrower sheets require all curlers to be cognizant of fellow curlers on the adjacent sheets who may be sweeping a rock or standing near the hog line on their sheet.
How can I keep current with club activities, events and bonspiels?
The club prints (and posts on the website) a monthly newsletter called Rock Talk. The print copies are available in the Main Lounge and in the locker rooms about the first week of each month. As well, check the bulletin boards, particularly the ones for your leagues. The club prints a Club Directory each November. This has contact information for all club members and it has the monthly schedules, as known at the time of printing. The website posts the draw schedule for each league. For those wishing to enter a bonspiel, the mailings from other clubs are available in a binder that is kept on the desk in the Main Lounge.
What is all the fuss about clean ice?
The goal of every curling club is to have ice that is 100% clear of debris because loose impediments such as bits of sand, stone, rubber, fabric, or hair can affect the way a rock slides along the ice. Even at the professional level, you will periodically hear the complaint, "the rock picked something" to explain why the rock suddenly changed direction. With 700 club members playing weekly, plus additional people who come for bonspiels and ice rentals, keeping the ice 100% clear of debris becomes a significant challenge. The list of "clean ice basics" below provides a good starting point for all club users:
Why are there signs about parking lot security at the club?
We encourage all members to be diligent in keeping valuables out of sight in their cars and to ensure that their car is locked at all times (daytime and evening). The installation of the video cameras in 2010 has made a difference in reducing theft, but keeping temptation out of the way is our best first step.
I am a member. How do I change my email address, password or other personal information?
Click "MEMBER LOGIN" at the top right of your screen and provide your login credentials. Then click "PROFILE" (top right of screen). The TASKS section provides links to change any portion of your profile.
Where can I find information about rules of the sport and other related information?
The Canadian Curling Association has an excellent website for those wishing to learn more about the sport. In addition to information about curling terms, general rules of play, some basic game strategy, the website has videos on some basics about delivery, etc.
How else can I get involved at the club?
Close to 25% of members volunteer in some form. Our club is dependent on these people in assisting in the operation and in keeping our fees low. The opportunities to participate include helping to convene a league or bonspiel, serving on one of the many committees such as Membership, Advertising or Pro Shop sales. Volunteering time in the office or helping with special functions or repairs to the premises are all appreciated. If you have an interest in any area, now or in the future, make it known to the office staff, a convenor or a member of the Board of Directors.