One of the biggest curling events in the country is headed to Atlantic Canada for the first time.

The 2020 Home Hardware Canada Cup will be played next November at the Aitken University Centre in Fredericton, it was announced today by Curling Canada.

The event, scheduled for Nov. 25-29, will feature Canada’s top men’s and women’s curling teams, chasing not only a huge cash purse, but also a coveted berth into the 2021 Tim Hortons Roar of the Rings — the event that will decide Canada’s four-player curling teams for the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing.

“The Home Hardware Canada Cup has produced some of the best and most intense curling you’ll ever see anywhere in the world, and we couldn’t be happier to see this event played in Atlantic Canada for the first time,” said John Shea, Chair of Curling Canada’s Board of Governors. “The Home Hardware Canada Cup is one of the toughest tests in our sport, and the fans in Fredericton will be treated to a wonderful event next year.”

Fredericton has proven itself a wonderful host of championship curling events in the past, both in arena settings and at the historic Capital Winter Club, which will host the Patch during the 2020 Home Hardware Canada Cup. Most recently, Fredericton hosted the 2019 Canadian Mixed Doubles, U SPORTS Canadian University and Canadian Colleges Athletic Association championships.

Other past major events in the city, include the 2017 Everest Canadian Senior Championships, the 2013 World Seniors and World Mixed Doubles Championships, the 2005 Canadian Junior Men’s and Women’s Championships, the 1988 Scotties Tournament of Hearts, the 1985 Canadian Junior Women’s Championship, the 1982 World Junior Men’s Championship, the 1980 Canadian Senior Women’s Championship, the 1975 Brier and the 1965 Canadian Junior Men’s Championship.

“It’s exciting to have the Capital Winter Club continue to build upon an excellent event resumé and attract world-class events to our doorstep such as the 2020 Home Hardware Canada Cup. The Capital Winter Club has quickly become an ambassador of Fredericton, on a national and international scale,” said Fredericton Mayor Mike O’Brien. “This is integral to the continued growth of the great sport of curling in our city, and to host at the historic Aitken University Centre adds to the success of our Sport Tourism economic development initiatives.”

The Aitken University Centre, located on the campus of the University of New Brunswick, is home ice for the UNB Varsity Reds, and has a hockey seating capacity of 3,278.

“What an honour it is for New Brunswick to host the 2020 Home Hardware Canada Cup of Curling!” said New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs. “I  want to offer my sincere congratulations to all of those who helped to make this happen. Curling fans are fortunate to have another marquee event come to our province, with Fredericton hosting the Home Hardware Canada Cup in 2020.  Sport tourism has long united communities in New Brunswick and for the province to host one of Canada’s largest sporting events allows us to showcase our hospitality and hosting abilities.”

The Home Hardware Canada Cup debuted in 2003 at Kamloops; the 2020 version will be the 16th edition of the event, which is not played in Olympic seasons.

The event was played in Kamloops for the first six years, and has since been played in Yorkton, Sask., Medicine Hat, Alta.,  Cranbrook, B.C., Moose Jaw, Camrose, Alta., Grande Prairie, Alta., Brandon, Man., Estevan, Sask., and most recently two weeks ago in Leduc, Alta., where Toronto’s John Epping and Ottawa’s Rachel Homan claimed the men’s and women’s titles respectively.

“Home Hardware is proud to sponsor the 2020 Home Hardware Canada Cup,” said Kevin Macnab, President and CEO, Home Hardware Stores Limited. “We serve over 1,000 communities across Canada and curling is a sport that brings these Canadian communities together. We are pleased to support such an important sport for our country.”

Tickets will go on sale in the new year. Details will be announced close to the on-sale date.

“This is exciting news; I know curling fans in Atlantic Canada have really been wanting to welcome an elite Curling Canada event, and the 2020 Home Hardware Canada Cup will be a big success in Fredericton,” said Dmitri Makrides, President of the New Brunswick Curling Association. “We’ve got a great core of curlers, curling fans and volunteers in Fredericton, and they’re ready to make this event a success on ever level.”

“We’ve watched this event for years on television, and we couldn’t be more proud to be the first host city in Eastern Canada for the Home Hardware Canada Cup,” added Fredericton Host Committee Vice-Chair Wayne Tallon. “I know our city will embrace this championship and make the athletes, coaches and fans feel extremely welcome, and they’ll head home after the event with memories for a lifetime.”