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Christmas bonspiel brings together family and friends for fun

The holiday season just wouldn't be the same without the annual Christmas bonspiel.

CANORA - In one of the most popular local holiday season traditions, the Canora Christmas Bonspiel was held on Dec. 29 to 31 at the Sylvia Fedoruk Centre, with 10 teams hitting the ice after taking part in various Christmas festivities.

As one of the organizers put it, “It’s an opportunity for family and friends to get together, have some fun, and work off some of those Christmas calories.”

Nine of the teams taking part in the bonspiel were from in or near Canora, including: Al Palagian, Bob Kolodziejski, Ryan Monette, Brandon Zuravloff, Aaron Herriges, Lenny Bazarski, Darcy Zielinski, Kelly McTavish and John Zbitniff. Rounding out the field was the Alia O’Neil foursome of Yorkton.

Each team played three, six-end games during the bonspiel in a Skins format, which encouraged the competitive side of the curlers. With each end acting as a mini-game, prize money was $5 per end for the first four ends, and $10 for each of the last two ends.

In order to claim the prize money for an end, the team with last rock had to score two or more points. The team without last rock could win the cash with a steal of any number of points. A count of one with the hammer resulted in a carryover.

A carryover in the final end was settled by a draw to the button- any player on the team could throw the rock but no sweeping was allowed.

Heading into the final draw of the bonspiel, the Brandon Zuravloff foursome had won $80 through the first two games and looked unbeatable. Zuravloff’s teammates were Brody Harrison, Cassidy Zuravloff and Kailey Sleeva, who just happened to make up three quarters of the 2022 Saskatchewan High School championship curling team. But Bob Kolodziejski and his team defeated Zuravloff to claim first place in the bonspiel. The Zuravloff team slipped to third, just behind the second-place Lenny Bazarski foursome.