Penn Sports Plus: Curling Edition

Curling at BGSU

This week, we feature Penn Curling Club President Elizabeth Shay, who breaks out the brooms and breaks down curling.

How did the curling club get started, and what does it consist of currently?

Shay: The curling club started a little over 10 years ago because there were students who had curled while growing up and wanted to continue the sport. Currently, we have about 10 people that show up consistently to practices as well as several others that stop in occasionally. Most of us never curled before college.

Why curling? It's not a sport that is on most American radars except during the Olympics.
Shay: Curling is a really fun sport that is easy enough to pick up that you can play a game in your first practice, but challenging enough that you can continue to improve your skills for the rest of your life.
                                                                                                                                                                             Do you mind having to travel to Villanova to practice, or do you see it as a bonding experience for the group?

Shay: We actually travel to Paoli, to the Philadelphia Curling Club and practice every week with Villanova. Since this is the only place in the area with curling ice, we really don't have a choice in traveling. It does impact our practice schedule over having closer ice, but the train ride out allows us all to talk. Although we have a friendly competition with Villanova, it's really great to practice with them.

What are the competitions like?

Shay: The bonspiels (competitions) are typically over a weekend, with the first draws (games) on Friday night, ending either Saturday night or Sunday morning. In most tournaments, teams don't play all of the games, so when you aren't playing you can talk to the other teams who aren't playing, as well as watch the draws being played. We also do homework if it's a busy weekend. Since the curling community is pretty small, you start to see the same people at every bonspiel, so it's fun to talk.

Why should someone come out and sign up?

Shay: As I said in an earlier question, curling is really easy to pick up and it's a lot of fun. We teach newcomers how to play, so you don't have to already know the game. We're a really casual group, so there's no pressure to make every practice if you get busy. Besides, saying you've been curling is a really good icebreaker!

We practice on Saturdays from 12-4. Contact us at and we'll let send out the details!

Where do you think the club is headed in the future?

Shay: In the near future we're preparing for various bonspiels and potentially Nationals. In the long-term, it would be great to have a larger team and we would like to host our own bonspiels.

2 thoughts on “Penn Sports Plus: Curling Edition

  1. While it wouldn't be dedicated ice, couldn't the club use the Class of '23 Ice Rink on campus to play? There are a lot of clubs that play on borrowed skating ice around the country, including the Bucks County club, locally.

    GNCC and/or USCA could help them to acquire the rocks, hacks and pebbling devices needed to set up for play, and offer any other advice or information needed to do so.

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