2015 Friendship Daily Report

The Canadian ladies arrived from British Columbia for their tour of Minnesota (MN) and North Dakota (ND).  This Daily Report (by Anne Vanic, Mayfield CC) summarizes the events from every day of the tour. 


November 10, 2015

Tomorrow is the day!  We are eagerly awaiting the arrival of our guests from BC.

November 11, 2015: St. Paul, Minnesota, Arrival Day

The day is here!

Our 15 guests representing 5 curling clubs in BC have arrived in MN. We had a welcoming gathering at the Hilton tonight.

Several guests who arrived earlier today had an opportunity to visit quilt shops & others took the shuttle to the Mall of America.  

After some rest we will head to the St Paul Curling club tomorrow morning. The 2015 Friendship Tour is underway!  

Welcome BC ladies!


November 12, 2015: St. Paul Cairn Lassies Host

It was a full, fun day. The Cairn Lassies/ St Paul Curling Club were fabulous hosts both on the ice and off.  After curling and lunch, the group headed across the Mississippi to Minneapolis.  We toured the Mill City museum where we learned about the rich history of flour milling  and its impact on the regions growth.  Dinner was at a classic St Paul neighborhood pub where many of us enjoyed their specialty the Juicy Nookie burger!  The final event was meeting up with their home hosts. 


Welcome to the St. Paul Curling Club.



Let the games begin.



St. Paul has 8 sheets.



Still smiling after a great game.



Mill City Museum



Taking a tour at the museum.



A group photo op in the Mill Flour Tower.



Entertaining the curlers.



First day's results.


Results - Cairn Lassies 5 Can 5, Cairn Lassies 8 Can 5, Cairn Lassies 1 Can 8, Cairn Lassies 9 Can 7.  2 games to the US.


November 13, 2015: Blaine MN, On To ND

Today our highlight was curling at the new USA Curling National Olympic Training Center in Blaine.  It is a beautiful 6 sheet facility.  Our BC women competed against 2 teams from the local  Four Seasons Curling club with some SPCC assistance  We were also fortunate & pleased to have 2 teams from Centerville, WI join the competition & comraderie.  A great time was had by all!  The day will also include a bus ride to Fargo, ND with a dinner stop in Alexandria, MN.  

 Our dinner stop was a real treat. We arrived in time to shop a bit on Broadway including a stop at the Sugar Shack which is reputed to have the best cookies in the state. Dinner was at La Ferme a gem of a French restaurant. We applauded the chef and everyone appeared happily full as they boarded our bus for the final leg to Fargo arriving after 9 PM.  We stayed across from the FM Curling Club but curling was finished for the evening.

The Centerville Ladies join the tour.


Inside the USA Curling National Training Center.


Delivering the rock.


View of the house.


Looking out onto the ice from behind the glass.


The beautiful 6 sheet facility.


More smiles after a hard fought game.


Time with our new friends.




Another good day of curling.


After all that exercise, you need something to eat.


And now for the post curling entertainment.


Results - FSCC 6  Can 7, FSCC 0 Can 14, USA 7 Can 7, USA 1, Can 10.  3 games to Canada.

November 14, 2015: Fargo and Grand Forks, ND

We spent the first half of the day in the Fargo Moorhead area.  Stops included the FM Visitors Center where the wood chipper from the movie Fargo is on display and available for photo ops!  We made a quick stop at the iconic Fargo Theater for another photo op. Next we ventured to Moorhead and visited the Hjemkomst Center which houses a full scale replica of a Viking ship. The ship was built in the area, sailed to Norway in 1982 & is now on permanent display.  An exact replica of a Norwegian Stave church is also on the grounds. A multicultural festival was occurring today also. We walked  a few blocks to Usher's House for a yummy lunch in a beautiful park like setting overlooking the river. In route to Grand Forks we saw mountains of local sugar beets awaiting processing. Donna Pearson USWCA president & the Grand ForksCC ladies welcomed us warmly., competitively curled & fed us extremely well.  The beer machines were a big hit!  We are especially appreciative of being hosted in homes tonight.

'Fargo' woodchipper.


Fargo Photo Op.


Viking Ship.


Stave Church.


Stave Church.




Team 1


Team 2


Team 3


Team 4




Cultural Center.


Results - Can 6 USA 4, Can 10 USA 1, Can 8 USA 5, Can 5 USA 7.

November 15, 2015: Grand Rapids, MN

The day started with a three hour bus ride to Grand Rapids.  It was a beautiful sunny day. Sights included more mounds of sugar beets & several bald eagles.  Wow- what a welcome we had at Itasca Curling Club. Glenda, the Cowardly Lion, Auntie Em, the Wizard & a munchkin all met us in costume.  The great hospitality built from there.  Their keen ice made for great curling too. After curling we had a private tour at the Judy Garland museum followed by wine & snacks.  Home hosting commenced after the museum. 


Bus to Grand Rapids.



Team 1.


Team 2.


Team 3.



Itasca CC Button Logo,


Team 4.


The tour makes the newspaper.



Outside the Judy Garland Museum.


Inside the Judy Garland Museum.



November 16, 2015: Chisholm and Hibbing, MN

Hump day today and the only day with two games.  The weather turned rainy so being inside most of the time worked out well.  We were welcomed to Chisholm CC and played against teams from Chisholm, Curl Mesabi, Hibbing & members of the 2012 Friendship Tour who came for a reunion & to help provide another team.  The ice was brand new & keen.  Score Canada 3 USA 1.  We were fed a local favorite - Porketta.  The pudding shot break after 4 ends was a big hit too!  The BC ladies entertained with song and the debute of their Friendship tour poem. 

Back on the bus for a 6 mile drive to Hibbing.  First stop was the unbelievably beautiful Hibbing High School.  Built in 1920 for 3.5 million its auditorium rivals many famous playhouses.  Next stop was the 102 year old, 7 sheet Hibbing Curling Club.  The 2012 Friendship tour team competed against us as well as 3 Hibbing teams.  Score Canada 3 & 1 tie.  The club went all out and fed us a full turkey dinner.  Happy early Thanksgiving to all!  The day ended with being hosted in homes once again.  Another super day!

Chisholm Team 1.

Shanty vs. Hamilton

Chisholm Team 2.

Rampton vs. Bone

Chisholm Team 3.

Hall vs. Haverkamp

Chisholm Team 4.

French vs. Danich

Pudding Break.


Chisholm Results.


2012 Friendship Tour Reunion


Hibbing High School



Hibbing Team 1.

Hamilton vs. French


Hibbing Team 2.

Rampton vs. Martin


Hibbing Team 3.

Hall vs. Perunovich


Hibbing Team 4.

Shantz vs. Versich

Hibbing Results.




The entire gang in Hibbing.


Results, Chisholm - USA 8 Can 3, USA 3 Can 9, USA 2 Can 10, USA 3 Can 9

Results, Hibbing - USA 4 Can 9, USA 3 Can 11, USA 1 Can 9, USA 4 Can 4

November 17, 2015: Eveleth and Duluth, MN

We had another rainy, foggy, cloudy weather day, but we persevered. It didn't stop us from a photo op at the Iron Man statue in Chisholm before we headed to Eveleth.  Members from Curl Mesabi CC welcomed us for a coffee & sweets break on our way to Duluth. Curl Mesabi is a beautiful 8 sheet club and some serious shopping occurred at their pro-shop.  Unfortunately the weather interfered with the great views as we arrived in Duluth but we remain hopeful tomorrow will provide another opportunity. The Duluth curling club had a warm & enthusiastic welcome for us followed by a wonderful lunch & curling. It is another spectacular 8 sheet club.  The curling was competitive but friendly.  While the teams curled, reporters from 3 local TV stations filmed the action and interviewed Molly & me about the tour. It was great seeing all the interest in the Friendship Tour & curling in general.  The club also filmed several of the games and the action is available for viewing at DuluthCurlingClub.org. The curlers met their hosts and had time for a bit of touring before heading downtown to a private club - The Kitchi Gammi Club.  The finale of the day included a wonderful meal and another opportunity for the Canadians to perform their songs & poetry. It was another super day. Thank you - everyone who helped make it possible!

Chisholm Mining Monument


Curl Mesabi Exterior


Warm Room at Curl Mesabi



Tour Group at Curl Mesabi


Rampton vs. Broman


Hall vs. McLeod


Shanty vs Lanigan



French vs. Christensen


2012 Sr. Friendship Tour Group in Duluth



Duluth's Eight Sheets.




Results - Can 9 USA 2, Can 11 USA 2, Can 10 USA 2, Can 6 USA 3

November 18, 2015: Duluth, MN

For our morning game at Duluth CC we were surprised & pleased to be piped on to the ice. The ice was more challenging today due to weather related humidity.  The DCC members rebounded and handily won 2 games & came in a close second in the other two games.  Despite some moments of frustration with the play the opportunity to play & share the experience was appreciated.  The baked potato bar lunch was great. Olympian John Shuster (member of the 2006 Bronze medal winning team) stopped by with his 2 boys. He brought his medal and graciously visited with & had pictures taken with tour members. 

The rain stopped & fog lifted by the time we left Duluth and some sights were seen as we headed back to St. Paul to complete the travel circle.  By request, our bus driver drove us over the high bridge to Superior, WI to make this a tri-state tour!  Following a wood-fire pizza supper in St. Paul, tour members will once again be home hosted by St. Paul Curling Club members. It's hard to believe the final curling game is tomorrow morning. 



Teams Piped In


View Toward the Glass.


French vs. Hughes


Hall vs. Docteur


Rampton vs. Christensen


Shantz vs. Shields




2012 Sr. Friendship Tour members with John

Shuster and his boys.

Tour Couriers with Olympic Bronze Medalist

John Schuster


Jackie Shuster and grandkids with 2 Olympic Medalists,

her son John (2006 USA Bronze) and

Penny Shantz (1988 Canada Gold)

Linda Christensen,

President Duluth Curling Club


The Canadians demonstrate the use of a Buff!



Mike, the bus driver, sharing a joke.


Results - Can 1 USA 10, Can 1 USA 9, Can 8 USA 6, Can 7 USA 4

November 19, 2015: St. Paul Bonnie Spielers Host

The tour has come full circle and our final curling was back at St Paul CC, this time with the Bonnie Spielers.  We were piped on the ice and had competitive fun games, with one ending in a tie.  Final results over the 9 games Canada 27 wins 5 losses & 4 ties.  The win loss record is noted but the friendship, comraderie and overall fun is the most important!  We had a great time broom stacking and chef Nancee & her assistants served a delicious lunch.  The BC ladies entertained us one last time with song, demonstration of the many uses of a buff, and Caroline's completed poem.  It was hard to leave the curling club but it had to happen.  We stopped at the 100 year old St Paul Cathedral before our stop at the MN History Center for a team photo and shopping.  Dinner was "to go" from Brasa so we could eat and relax a bit at the hotel before heading to the Orpheum in downtown Minneapolis.  We saw Beautiful - the Carole King Musical.  The play was fantastic and enjoyed by all.  We said good bye to Mike our bus driver when we returned to the hotel  Yes things are winding down but not before some merriment tonight.  Tomorrow half the group will be heading home but not before some touring including the new Chaska Curling Club and a closing luncheon.  Thanks to everyone who helped make the USWCA Friendship Tour 2015 a success.  


Wilkes (French) vs. Gresback


Hall vs McGirl


Rampton vs. Rachu 


Shantz vs. Augustin




Tour Couriers with Hudson


Lunch at the St. Paul Curling Club


Lunch in the Upstairs Warm Room


Tour Group Outside the St. Paul CC


Tour Group with the Bus


Visit to the St. Paul Cathedral


Inside the St. Paul Cathedral


Shopping at the MN History Center




Group Photo with Couriers


Orpheum Theater


The ladies at the theater.



Results - Can 11 USA 3, Can 7 USA 4, Can 7 USA 7, Can 7 USA 4

November 20, 2015: Minneapolis/St. Paul

Today was pick your pleasure day. Several wonderful volunteer drivers from SPCC came to the hotel and took tour members to their choice of touring opportunities. Two groups went to the new Chaska Curling club which is opening in 10 days. They needed to wear hard hats for their tour.  Another car took the scenic drive past the Minneapolis city lakes on their way downtown to a shop with glass blowing.  The fourth car ventured to Anoka to a quilt shop and other shopping.  Several others decided to sleep in and relax at the hotel.   We all met a 1 PM for our closing luncheon (we missed Caroline who had a morning flight).  We had an opportunity to share one more great meal while sharing favorite memories of the tour, insights, suggestions and reflections.  Half the group had flights home Friday evening while the rest had one more night at the hotel and a chance to have dinner together at the Mall of America.  

Thanks again to the tour members for participating in the USWCA Sr. Friendship Tour 2015.  Thank you also to the many, many volunteers who helped make it such a success.  The Sr. Friendship Tour would not have been possible without all the support.  



Ceramic Pitcher from the USWCA


Closing Luncheon





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