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Paris Curling Club

Club History

On November 28th, 1843 in the village of Paris whose population was nearly 1,000, a score and
a half, of most enthusiastic followers of the Besom and Stane (mostly Scotts) met to form a
curling club. There had been curling on the rivers and ponds recorded as early as 1837. Some of
the Scots had their own curling stones, but the newly formed club ordered Mr. John Smith to
chip 12 new stones.
Favourite curling places were Watt’s Pond and the Nith River, below Distillery Hill (there were 9
distilleries in Paris at one time). If the ice was good, they often curled around the clock by the
light of bonfires.
The first covered rink was built in 1877 on Elm Street, called the Paris Curling and Skating Rink.
Several curlers subscribed money ... one dollar to eight dollars, some gave time and labour. It
was recorded that 7-1/2 day’s work amounted to $7.50 and 1-1/4 days work was $1.25. Others
donated hardware and building materials. Some curled and others skated in this building until
January 19th, 1921, when the rink burned to the ground.
The Paris Arena (now the Syl Apps Community Centre) was built the same year and a “lean-to”
was built on the south side of the new building, which housed three sheets of ice and a club-
room. However, this curing building did not prove too satisfactory. Being on the south side of
the building, the ice was poor due to the warmth. After several years with little curling, but lots
of euchre, the roof caved in.
Galt offered Paris curlers special rates for the use of their ice. Paris curlers continued until
around the 1950’s. Seven gentlemen continued paying OCA fees, to retain continuous
membership. Then by 1957, there was a reorganization and women were allowed to join the
Club. They curled in the arena on 5 sheets of ice (twice each week). Other days the ice was
used for hockey and skating.
In 1961 the present Paris Curling Club was build in conjunction with the Paris Agriculture
Society. The Club will celebrate its 175th Anniversary in 2018. The Club continues to offer
curling to Juniors, Women, Men and Mixed groups.
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