On February 2nd the Oilfield Technical Society (OTS) Bonspiel held its opening ceremonies to mark the return of a 65 year old tradition in Weyburn. The annual social event draws local oilfield employees, their spouses, friends and supporters to the Weyburn Curling Club for two days of curling, comaradarie, and community support.
At the opening of each OTS Bonspiel, monetary donations are made to organizations that support the development of local youth. To display their gratitude for the support that the Weyburn area had shown to the oilfield industry, the OTS Bonspiel previously announced that $6,500 would be given back in honor of their 65th event. In a surprising twist, emcee Rob Somerville rallied the gathered crowd with news that an even larger sum was being divvied that evening.
"Over the last three years we've been very fortunate," Somerville announced. "Through the OTS Bonspiel and the local oil companies in town, we've exceeded our expectations and ended up with some extra money in the bank... In total it's $8,322 that we're going to be giving away today."
Cheques in the amount of $1,000 were each presented to Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Weyburn, Weyburn Minor Football, The Family Place, Silver Seals, and Tatagwa Kidz Kare. $500 dollar donations were awarded to Weyburn Junior Lacrosse, Weyburn Wrestling Club, Brokenshell Multiple 4H Club and the Spirit Singers, who sang the National Anthem just prior.
Weyburn Junior Curling also accepted a donation of $822 which would cover half of their annual membership fees, and a final award was given to Laura Woodard for her commendable displays of "True Grit."
"She displayed a curling talent right from the start, and she was very coachable, friendly and helpful," said Danette Tracey, Woodard's coach for the past 5 years.
The Kim Brady, Michael Mainil "True Grit" award is granted each year to a junior curler who has shown both skill and passion for the sport as well as the drive to give back to their organization through mentorship and volunteerism. For this, Laura Woodard was recognized with a gift of $500 which was presented by Mainil.