Sports

A new shuffleboard club will run at Ingersoll arena during the summer Monday's and Wednesday's

By Greg Colgan, Sentinel-Review

Shuffleboard players take part in a tournament in Woodstock, Ont. in May 2013. A new shuffleboard club will let people play Monday and Wednesday's from 1 to 4 p.m. at Ingersoll arena. Submitted photo

Shuffleboard players take part in a tournament in Woodstock, Ont. in May 2013. A new shuffleboard club will let people play Monday and Wednesday's from 1 to 4 p.m. at Ingersoll arena. Submitted photo

INGERSOLL - 

Anyone wanting to try shuffleboard will have a permanent home to play from until the end of August.

Ingersoll arena will host a new shuffleboard club Monday and Wednesday’s from 1 to 4 p.m. until the ice is put back in in late-August. The new club began in August last year with eight courts permanently drawn on the rink floor and they’ll have 16 this year.

“We’re hoping it’s going to take off and we get a lot of members,” club organizer Jim Corbeil said in a phone interview. “We’ve got a good facility to be based out of.

“We had a good reception. We had our first day last Wednesday and 15 came out,” he added. “I expect we’ll have 30 to 35 this week and it’ll go up from there hopefully.”

Corbeil noted they hope the club will see an influx of players from Oxford County, but they’ve already had players from Ancaster and London play during the first week.

“We’re hoping to draw from all over Oxford County, but we’re hoping to draw a pretty good group since people are interested,” he said.

The Ingersoll arena became a perfect fit with the rink sitting largely empty between mid-April to late-August, while the central location and cement floor allows them to use permanent courts rather than roll up mats. The courts will also have glass beads instead of the plastic ones used with the mats, with players largely preferring the glass and permanent floor to play on.

As of now, they have a pay as you go system of $3 per day but Corbeil said they’re hoping to get a membership fee in the coming weeks to offset longterm costs for hopeful players.

“Not everyone wants to pay every time. Other areas in London or St. Marys have the option for a flat rate,” he said. “We’re hoping to get something similar rather than just play as you go.”

In recent years, shuffleboard has been a growing sport in the county.

The Canadian National Shuffleboard Association annual nationals have taken place the past two years at Cowan Park and will once again return to Woodstock May 29 to June 1. The annual tournament have seen more than 150 people from different parts of North America participate.

“Woodstock’s been so good to us and Cowan Park’s a terrific facility,” Corbeil, who’s also the CNSA president, said. “The city helps us with a grant as well, so it’s been great there.”

For new players to the game, Corbeil said they’ll teach the basics of the sport but they’ll get their feet wet in playing games once they get set up.

“That’s the best way to learn is to just play. You give them advice as they go and give them pointers, but no one’s too serious. It’s a welcoming place,” he said. “You’re just there for a good time. We’ve found that method has worked best.”

Corbeil said if they can get a flat fee established, they’re hoping for upwards of 75 people.

“I think it’ll grow. Once we know if we can get a flat fee, more people will get interested,” he said. “It’s a fun sport and once people try it, they love it.”

Anyone looking for more information can contact Jim Corbeil at 519-290-4400 or e-mail at: jcmccorbeil@gmail.com or Ruth Stewart at 519-303-1944 or by e-mail at rdstewart17@gmail.com.

gcolgan@postmedia.com

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