Scotties Tournament of Hearts
Red Deer proudly hosted the Scotties Tournament of Hearts at the Enmax Centrium on February 18 - 26, 2012. As
the tournament returns for the fifth time in the event's history.
Red Deer is second only to Regina in total attendance at a Scotties
Tournament of Hearts. In 2004, the Scotties Tournament of Hearts
attracted 112,688 fans to our city.
The sponsor of the very first Canadian Women's Curling
Championship, held in 1961, was Dominion Stores. The Championship
was named the Diamond D. In 1972, Macdonald Tobacco, who had
sponsored men's curling and the Macdonald's Brier since 1927
extended their sponsorship by adding the national women's title
which was appropriately named "The Macdonald Lassie".
In 1979, curling and Macdonald's parted ways after ownership and
control had shifted south of the border in 1973 and the
federal government was placing increasing pressure on the tobacco
industry. It was to be the last Lassie and the Canadian Ladies
Curling Association (CLCA) would take two more years to find
another sponsor. That sponsor was Scott Paper Limited. In 1981,
Scott Paper signed an agreement with the CLCA to sponsor the
Canadian Women's Curling Championship. The announcement was made at
the 1981 Lassie in St. John's, Newfoundland.
The first Scott Tournament of Hearts was held in Regina the next
year. Attendance at that first event was just under 10,000. When
the event returned to the city in 1998, The Scott Tournament of
Hearts set a new attendance record that still stands - 154,688.
(It's interesting to note that the second highest attendance record
was set in Red Deer in 2004.)
Scott Paper brought many new ideas to women's curling and
working closely with the Canadian Curling Association, The Scott
Tournament of Hearts has become what many feel is the premier
women's sporting event in this country. The event's name has
changed with a change in ownership of the company. When Kruger
Products purchased the company, The "Scott" changed to the
"Scotties Tournament of Hearts". This sponsorship will celebrate
its 30th Anniversary in Charlottetown, PEI in 2011.
Curling has a very intricate playoff structure. Although
different in each province and the territories, there are many
layers of play and few opportunities to make a mistake. You need to
be on your game, at the right time with "Lady Luck" close at your
side. Whenever curlers discuss The Scotties Tournament of Hearts
the conversation will inevitably turn to diamonds. That's because
curlers are presented with a gold four-heart pendant and chain when
they win their provincial or territorial championship title and
then each year they repeat as champions, Scott Paper adds a diamond
to the pendant. When the pendant is full, Scott presents the curler
with a tennis bracelet with diamonds.
At the national level, the members of the top three teams
receive gold rings with diamonds for gold medalist, emeralds for
silver and rubies for bronze. Repeat a second or third time at any
of these spots and the precious stones just keep getting
So how have Alberta teams fared historically? Well, in 50 years
the province has claimed the title a total of just six times.
Winning teams were skipped by Gale Lee in 1966, Hazel Jamieson in
1968, Myrna McQuarrie in 1977, Chris Pidzarko in 1978, Susan Seitz
in 1981 with the most recent winning skip being Cathy Borst in
World Champions? The first Women's World Championship was held
in Perth, Scotland in 1979. Canada has an enviable record in
international play, having captured the title 15 times in the
event's 32-year history. However, an Alberta team has yet to claim
Be a part of history and support your team at the 2012 Scotties
Tournament of Hearts in Red Deer at the Enmax Centrium February 18
-26, 2012. For more information visit www.stoh.ca