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Bowled over: Carpet bowling comes to Honeymoon Bay

New recreation program: Senior Games gold medallists help launch carpet bowling program
Gordon Croft throws the bowl to gauge its weight with gold medal-winning bowler Egon Gron watching his form. “You don’t drop the bowl

Carpet bowling has come to Honeymoon Bay through the donation of two used mats from the Valley Seniors Organization.

The 2013 Seniors Games carpet bowling gold medal-winning foursome of Connie Parker (formerly of Lake Cowichan), George Capella (formerly of Honeymoon Bay), Jean McIntyre of Skutz Falls and Egon Gron of Duncan were on hand Nov. 18 at the Honeymoon Bay Community Hall to launch the area’s carpet bowling program and to teach a dozen Cowichan Lake area residents the proper etiquette and rules for play.

The Duncan seniors team, which has an average age of 82.5, split the group of participants into four teams and helped them gauge the weight of the balls — called bowls — and worked to improve their throwing style.

Carpet bowling is a combination of curling and bowling, with lighter balls and less running around, that appeals to the people who were here to learn the game.

Karla Erickson was here because she is looking for a sport that is not hard on the neck and shoulders. Within a few throws, she was getting the feel for the odd-shaped weighted bowls and was placing them near the jack — the little ball you need to end up closest to.

Carolyne Austin from the Lake Cowichan Seniors Centre says they have an active group of players, and they hope that tournaments can be arranged between the two communities in the future.

Linda Blatchford, manager of Cowichan Lake Recreation, feels if there is enough interest in carpet bowling that more mats can be purchased for other halls in the area, but for now, players will be able to play at the Lake Cowichan Seniors Centre or Honeymoon Bay.

Carpet bowling in Honeymoon Bay will run until February when outdoor lawn bowling starts.

For information or to join a team, Guy Patten encourages people to show up at the Honeymoon Bay Hall on Mondays at 10 a.m. or Wednesdays at 7 p.m. People can also call the Hall at 250- 749-4700 or call Cowichan Lake Recreation at 250-749-6742.