Curlers at the 15th annual Scotiabank Curl for Kids Sake in Tillsonburg on Saturday, Jan. 31 had a 'groovy time' raising funds for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ingersoll, Tillsonburg and Area.
A full draw of eight teams at the Tillsonburg Curling Club, together with last weekend's Curl for Kids Sake in Ingersoll, raised $18,150, just shy of the $20,000 target.
"We had one draw (eight teams) in Ingersoll and one in Tillsonburg – last year we had two draws in Tillsonburg," said BBBS executive director Deb Landon. "But the two draws this year raised more than three draws last year. That shows you how much people went the extra distance to raise funds. We had three people raise more than $1,000 in pledges, two today, one in Ingersoll."
Scotiabank Tillsonburg – a diamond sponsor – had teams in both Tillsonburg's and Ingersoll's Curl for Kids. Teams curling Saturday included sponsor Wellmaster Pipe and Supply, Ingersoll Masons, Unifor Local 88, and Bossy Nagy Group.
"Some sponsors can't participate, so they sponsor a team and we have volunteers and matches on the teams."
More than $1,400 was contributed through online pledges.
"That's a great tool for people who are beyond our area."
With the local Big Brothers Big Sisters celebrating its 40th anniversary, Saturday's theme was '70s' and participants were encouraged to dress in decade-appropriate costumes. In addition to tie-dye T-shirts, head bands and wigs, there were British invasion shirts and bell-bottoms.
"Forty years... 1975," Landon nodded.
Chris Luty from the 'Bossy Nagy Groovy' team, looked like he stepped out of a time machine. Tie-dye shirt, rainbow headband, wig, sunglasses... he had it all, and wore it all day.
"I grew my hair in the 90s, not the 70s," he laughed. "But I like old music though."
A casual curling event, the emphasis was on fun in the morning and afternoon draws.
"The person skipping for us is experienced, and Al used to curl, but the rest of us are not," said Luty, nodding toward his Bossy Nagy Groovy teammates. "The skill knowledge of curling required is not proportional to the amount of fun you're going to have. Absolutely... it's a lot of fun."
Big Brothers Big Sisters services more than 240 children in the area, said Landon, who noted that was an increase of 22 per cent in children and volunteers.
"That's pretty amazing... that's a big growth."
Part of that increase comes from new mentor programs introduced in 2014.
Next on the Big Brothers Big Sisters fundraising calendar is Bowl for Kids Sake in May.