|T Therriault, V Crichton, H Morris, L Evans, L Racicot, N Pellow, A Vale, P Merrifield|
The program for the dinner, provided by Dr. Vince Crichton, claimed that it was "the most exclusive club in the world, and as far as we know, the only one of its kind in the world."
Note that the program does not say they were the only rinks to achieve 8 enders in curling --- they were the only ones to form a club to celebrate the achievement.
Two rinks from the Chapleau Curling Club were members. The first winners were Les Evans, skip; Newt Pellow, third; Rev. A.J Vale, second, and P. Merrifield, lead. The second winners were Leo Racicot, skip; Harry Morris, third (my grandfather); Vince Crichton, second, and Tommy Therriault, lead.
With no explanation provided, Arthur Grout was described as "Handyman" and Earle Sootheran as "Slide Evans victim".
The program explained that "No one can become a member of the club unless he or she belongs to a regulation curling club. and at some time, during a bonspiel competition, they score one (an 8 Ender) on their opponents."
It added that "All members shall be distinguished by a special emblem of silver. on which shall be inscribed '8 End Club'"
No real rules were needed as it required teamwork, good sportsmanship, co-operation and skill to become a member. "Why clutter up the club with useless regulations?", the program says.
The report on the dinner at the Urwelkum Inn, said that an air of good fellowship abounded, with good speeches, a sing song and a general good time was had by all.
Dr Vince explained that "An 8 ender is where a team comprised of a skip, third, second and lead score the maximum number of points in one end which is 8 – each team has 8 rocks to throw and if all in the rings, and no opposition rocks closer to the button (absolute centre) then they count 8 points or however many are closer than the opposition. Not many attain this hallowed ground..."
Writing in 'Pioneering in Northern Ontario" Vince Crichton, Dr. Vince's father, noted that curling began in Chapleau in the winter of 1885-86, the year Chapleau was founded with the arrival of the Canadian Pacific Railway. The first sheet of ice was located on Lorne Street about where the Chapleau Memorial Community Arena was.
In 1929, the Chapleau Curling Club hosted the Northern Ontario Curling Association bonspiel. In 1932, it hosted the bonspiel again, Vince wrote, and on this occasion, a rink composed of Leo Racicot, Harry Morris, Vince Crichton and A. Kinahan reached the finals with the exception of the Consolation Trophy. At least until Vince's book was published in 1975, no Chapleau rink achieved this success again.
One final note on the dinner. It appeared that it may have lasted until "7:45 a.m." the following morning with no explanation given for that exact time. Remember too that the club was formed in the midst of the Great Depression, and is another example of Chapleau folks coming together to celebrate, even in times of great challenges --- the Chapleau Winter Carnival was also established in 1936!
Thanks Dr. Vince for providing the details on the 8 Enders Club. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org
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