What a summer for Capital One Rocks & Rings! Despite curling ice having melted away kids were still learning about curling as we visited summer camps, birthday parties and even street festivals across Canada. It was a great way to beat the heat even though the temperatures were soaring.
What does the fall bring for Rocks & Rings? Well, the school season is well into another year and the program is back full steam ahead and looking to continue to break our own personal bests. It won’t be easy though, as the 2011-2012 year proved to be a very successful one: we achieved a new milestone by reaching 120,000 students in a single school year – breaking the 100,000 mark for the first time!
Last year we worked closely with a number of provincial associations, including PEI, who were able to secure a grant to help further subsidize the costs for some schools in their area to receive the program. In addition, we worked with them to get kids to the Players’ Championship event in Summerside, which for most of the kids was their first chance to ever see live curling.
With the addition of over eight new instructors last year in locations including Regina, Saskatoon and six different spots in Ontario, the program expanded into many new cities and regions.
The Ontario Trillium Grant is helping launch the Capital One Rocks & Rings program in a further four new cities in Ontario this year. Due to their generosity over the past year, we are now available this year in the Hamilton, London, Peterborough and Sault Ste. Marie areas, putting us in over 25 locations across Canada. We will also be launching in Quebec for the first time, with our television commercial now available in French on RDS curling broadcasts. We’ve also added some great instructors to our already fantastic line up of staff, with Andrew O’Dell in New Brunswick and Kalynn Park in Calgary just to name a couple.
We anticipate reaching our goal of 125,000 students with many schools from last year who have already booked our new “Year Two” program. With the help of Curl BC and various schools in Toronto we have tested and developed new activities that expand students’ curling knowledge. Our second year program allows schools to continue curling in their classrooms for another year with something different and fun. The second year program builds on the first visit and combines fun new activities along with some of the students’ favorites. These games have helped create new and exciting programs to keep kids learning about this great Olympic sport.
The Capital One Rocks & Rings program has been actively growing across Canada for the past five years and we are trying to reach as many regions as we can. Please be patient if we’re not in your area yet – we’re working on it! We are also always looking for local volunteers to help spread the word and share information about Rocks & Rings with their local schools and teachers. Please get in touch if you’re interested in volunteering a few hours to help grow the game.
A big thanks to the entire curling community for helping us Rock the Rings!