Kelly Cup, P.G. Ladies Bonspiel canceled

Stuck between a rock and hard place, local curlers knew the announcement was inevitable.

There will be no 93rd edition of the Kelly Cup men's curling tournament and the Prince George Ladies Bonspiel.

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Both events, scheduled for April 3-5 at the Prince George Golf and Curling Club, have been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kelly Cup chairman Bill Lim and Ladies Bonspiel organizer Diamond Wilson, provided a joint statement in an email to the Citizen expressing their regrets for having to cancel the city's oldest annual sporting event.

"This decision was hard for all of us as many of the committee members were also volunteers for the World Women’s Curling Championship canceled late last week, a double-hit to Prince George and the curling community," they said.

"However as members of the community, we feel it is our responsibility to help in any way possible to slow the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus that will put an incredible strain on our health care providers and resources in the weeks and months ahead.

"We could not honestly guarantee the safety of the participants, their families, friends and supporters and that of course is our first concern."

The Kelly Cup is still the granddaddy of all trophies (height-wise) in Canadian men's curling, and has been ever since it was presented to the club in 1926 by Prince George jeweler John Kelly. At 42 inches tall, the Kelly Cup has served as a beacon for curlers from all over Canada to converge on the ice at the Prince George Golf and Curling Club.

In addition to thanking their sponsors and the curlers and fans who support the annual end-of-season events, Lim and Wilson promised they have every intention of bringing back both tournaments in 2021.

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