Curling Club gets new ice man

Ice making a family tradition for new technician and manager Gary Hogarth.

Gary Hogarth is taking over as manager and ice technician at the Invermere Curling Club for the 2011-12 curling season.

The Invermere Curling Club has a new manager and ice technician for the upcoming season.

Gary Hogarth is stepping into the manager position for the first time, but is certainly no stranger to ice making and maintenance.

“I’ve been in curling and ice making all my life,” said Hogarth. “My dad did it, my brothers did it, and I do it.”

Hogarth has worked as an ice technician at various rinks over the years, including four years in Golden.

Hogarth is a former valley resident, having attended David Thompson Secondary in his younger days, who returned to the area to work in construction.

However, it’s his return to ice making that feels most like a homecoming.

“I’m returning to my roots now,” said Hogarth of his technician position.

Flooding and freezing the rink is in the works. New ice is tentatively slated to be in the rink by October 6, or possibly sooner if all goes according to plan.

This season will be business as usual for the Curling Club, but Hogarth intends to get word out about the club and generate more interest in the community.

“We’re making the effort to get interest out there,” said Hogarth.

“There’s a push to make the rink more accessible and get people to try it out.”

Hogarth is also hoping to see more junior and younger curlers out on the ice this season.

“I was surprised to find that they have a full set of junior granite curling stones here,” said Hogarth.

“It would be a shame to not put them to use.”

Hogarth will be taking a few new courses in order to stay up-to-date with the ice technology available at the Curling Club, but at its core, the art of ice making is still very much the same.

“Before when you were making ice, and doing pebbling, for example, it would have to be done at a specific temperature,” Hogarth explained.

“Now, ice making can produce such quality ice, it’s almost perfect, or is perfect compared to making ice back in the day.”

For those looking to book the ice at the Curling Club, or who are interested in volunteering at the rink, contact Hogarth at invermerecurling@shaw.ca or call 250-342-3315.

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