Breaking ground on home for curling

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The Lakewood area is on the road to becoming the home of the first dedicated curling center in the Denver area.

The Denver Curling Club (DCC) broke ground Oct. 29 on the location of its site, 14100 W. Seventh Ave., near the Denver West and Colorado Mills shopping area, by 6th Avenue and Indiana Street.

The weather was cold and cloudy, but the more than 20 people in attendance were in warm spirits, making cracks with each other about how it was perfect curling weather.

“This is an exciting time in DCC history,” Matt Culbertson, vice president of the club told attendees. “I’m really thinking this is something that’s going to last in the community.”

According to Pam Finch, president of the DCC, the center will be the only ice between Seattle and Bismarck, N.D., dedicated to training. The center would be used to help youth, junior, adult, senior and wheelchair curlers prepare for national, international, Olympics and Paralympics competition, as well as a location to host regional and national events.

Currently the club uses The Ice Ranch in Littleton.

The facility is estimated to cost around $2.5 million, and the aim is to have it built by spring of 2014. The Jefferson County Commissioners approved the rezoning for the project in August.

The 4.7-acre site will also house the future Colorado State Patrol Museum and Learning Center, who have been extremely supportive of the curling center.

According to Finch the fundraising efforts are still in the works, but she said the center has been lucky in all the support it has received.

“We’ve raised funds through donations, corporate donations and loans,” she said. “The land we’re using was donated by the owner, and that’s been a huge help.”

Scott Stevinson, who is heading up the building committee, spoke at the ground breaking, saying the process to finding a new home has tested everyone in club , but that the process has been challenging, interesting and rewarding.

“It was the blending of talents of our people that made this work,” he said. “We’re all very encouraged by the enthusiasm. We really believe we’re doing something unique.”

Jen Nguyen, who helped formed the University of Denver’s curling club, is also a member of the DCC board, and said that seeing this first step completed is something that many have been waiting for.

“Curling on real ice is something that people don’t really understand until they do it,” she said. “There are a lot of people who might be interested in this that are hiding, but hopefully this center will bring them out.”

For more information, visit www.denvercurlingclub.com.

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