North Battleford residents have another chance to see some of the world best curlers at the 2019 Meridian Canadian Open. This is the fifth event and the third major for the Sportsnet owned and operated Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling campaign.
The return of the Meridian Open will take place at Civic Centre Jan. 8-13. Sixteen of the top men’s and women’s teams will compete in the triple knockout format where teams must win three games before they lose three in order to advance to the playoffs.
Co-chair for the host committee Russ Brown says the 2017 Meridian Open helped North Battleford out in a lot of categories, especially financially.
“We have been told that the average impact is about $1.3 million on the local community. Because our attendance was so high and we attracted people from such a distance we assume we would be at or above that number.”
Brown says feedback from sponsorships were all positive. Hotels were allegedly full, restaurants were packed and gas station sold more gas than they’d sell in a month. He says that the experience prepared the committee and the city for January.
“Having run perhaps one of the most successful events they’ve’ ever had, now we have the same organizing committee. This will be Relatively easy.”
At the last open the Civic Centre attracted about $20,000 in paid attendance plus $5,000 in national sponsors. Brown says the event attracted people from all around Canada.
“We had 27 hours of national tv coverage with a little in excess of 2 million viewers. The national exposure, the ability of North Battleford to be portrayed in a very positive light was tremendously important to us.”
Tickets are available through the Pinty’s Grand Slam of Curling website or by calling the Battlefords North Stars Box Office at 306-445-7827.