The world’s most famous women’s curling national championship is making a rapid return to a city that rolled out the welcome mat in style three years ago.
The 2020 Scotties Tournament of Hearts will be played Feb. 14-23 at Mosaic Place in Moose Jaw, Sask., it was announced today by Curling Canada.
Moose Jaw played host to the 2015 Canadian Women’s Curling Championship, drawing 70,047 fans — the 11th-best attended Scotties in the history of the event.
“Curling and Saskatchewan go hand in hand, and we saw first-hand in 2015 how Moose Jaw supports the Scotties Tournament of Hearts, so I know this was an easy decision for Curling Canada’s events team,” said Maureen Miller, Chair of Curling Canada’s Board of Governors. “Mosaic Place is a superb facility, and there is a dedicated group of volunteers and fans in Moose Jaw who will make the 2020 Scotties Tournament of Hearts and overwhelming success.”
In addition to hosting the 2015 Scotties, Mosaic Place also played host to the 2012 Canada Cup of Curling, which broke attendance records for the event, and the 4,500-seat facility is perfectly suited to hosting the crown jewel of Canadian women’s curling.
“The City of Moose Jaw is thrilled to host the 2020 Scotties Tournament of Hearts,” said Mayor Fraser Tolmie. “Moose Jaw has a passion for championship curling. This is the second time we have been chosen to host the Scotties in our world-class facility, Mosaic Place, and we are very excited to extend our hospitality and provide some world-class curling!”
Mosaic Place opened in August 2011, featuring a hockey arena that, in addition to its seating bowl, features 21 private suites and 132 club seats. Attached to the same building is the eight-sheet Moose Jaw Ford Curling Centre, which will host the popular HeartStop Lounge entertainment area.
Before the 2012 Canada Cup, Moose Jaw played host to numerous other major curling events, including the 1983 World Women’s Championship, the 1979 World Junior Men’s Championship and the 1994 Canadian Senior Men’s and Women’s Championships.
“The Government of Saskatchewan is pleased the Scotties Tournament of Hearts is returning to Moose Jaw,” Gene Makowsky, Minister of Sport and Minister Responsible for Tourism Saskatchewan, said. “It will be a privilege for our province to welcome Canada’s top talent in women’s curling, along with fans of the sport. Moose Jaw has a record of success in hosting curling championships and I’m sure will rise to the occasion in 2020.”
The 2020 Scotties will extend the amazing partnership between Kruger Products and Curling Canada to 39 years, dating back to Kruger taking on title sponsorship of the Canadian women’s championship in 1982 — one of the longest-running partnerships in Canadian sports.
“Kruger Products is thrilled to continue our almost four decades of sponsoring women’s curling,” said Nancy Marcus, Chief Marketing Officer at Kruger Products. “We are excited to see the Scotties Tournament of Hearts return to Moose Jaw as the 2015 event at Mosaic Place was a great success. As a Canadian company, we are proud to continue to support the national and provincial women’s championships. We look forward to Saskatchewan’s generous hospitality as they host the best Canadian female curlers.”
It will be the sixth time the Scotties Tournament of Hearts has been played in Saskatchewan. The 2015 edition at Moose Jaw featured Manitoba’s Jennifer Jones winning her fifth Scotties title; Jones also prevailed seven years earlier at Regina.
Regina also hosted in 1998 (won by Alberta’s Cathy King) and 1982 (won by Nova Scotia’s Colleen Jones), while B.C.’s Julie Sutton took the 1991 Hearts title in Saskatoon.
Prior to the Tournament of Hearts format, previous Canadian women’s championships were played in Saskatoon in 1972 (won by Saskatchewan’s Vera Pezer) and in 1962 at Regina (won by B.C.’s Ina Hansen).
“This will be an amazing showcase for women’s curling, based on what we saw in 2015, and the eagerness of the Moose Jaw curling community to bring the Scotties back so quickly,” said Ashley Howard, Executive-Director of CURLSASK. “I know that city is gearing up to get to work to make the 2020 Scotties Tournament of Hearts a memorable event for everyone.”
Teams wearing Saskatchewan colours have won a leading 11 Canadian women’s curling championships, the most recent being Amber Holland’s 2011 victory at Charlottetown.
The number increases to 12 when you factor in Sandra Schmirler’s 1994 Hearts victory as Team Canada.
“We’ve been waiting for this announcement for a long time, and it’s exciting news to finally make it official,” said Kevin deDelley, who co-chaired the Moose Jaw bid committee with Joe Gunnis. “We’ve 16 months of hard work in front of us, but I know this city is ready to make it happen, and send curlers and fans home from Moose Jaw in 2020 with smiles on their faces.”
The winner of the 2020 Scotties Tournament of Hearts will represent Canada at the 2020 World Women’s Championship (dates, location TBA).