Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Tiny town of Morris to host big bonspiel

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The waterlogged community of Morris finally got a welcome piece of news this week -- and made a little Canadian curling history at the same time.The Canadian Curling Association announced Thursday that Morris -- a southern Manitoba island surrounded by floodwaters these days -- has been awarded the 2011 Canadian Mixed Curling Championship.

Resby Coutts, co-chairman of the event alongside Brenda Reckseidler, did a little research and believes Thursday's announcement makes Morris one of the smallest communities -- possibly the smallest -- ever to be awarded a Canadian curling championship.

"It shows there are some good things happening in Morris," said Coutts, who operates the popular curling website, www.thecurler.com.

Diminutive size

Morris has a population of 1,643 according to the last census, barely one-quarter of the 7,500 people who live in Iqaluit, which hosted the 2009 Canadian mixed.

That event was won by Manitoba's Sean Grassie.

Despite its diminutive size, Morris has become a popular curling stop in recent years, hosting a provincial women's championship, a Manitoba Curling Tour championship and, most recently, an ambitious new cashspiel on the World Curling Tour.

"It's a testimony to the whole community and everyone who's worked so hard," said Lorne Hamblin, the driving force behind many of those recent events.

Manitoba has hosted four previous Canadian Mixed championships -- the last time in Brandon in 1989.

paul.wiecek@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition April 11, 2009 D11

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