MacKenzie Cup undergoes revival


WESTVILLE — It was a magic time on Feb. 24 as 14 women’s teams gathered at the Westville Curling Club to contest the MacKenzie Cup for the first time in more than 40 years.

Three teams from the Bluenose Curling Club combined to win the cup, that was first contested 80 years ago in 1939 and whose last named winner was in 1978.

“This is great for women’s curling,” said Bonnie Coulter, who helped organize the event and skipped one of the five teams that represented the Westville Club.

Organizers used a points system to determine the winner by totalling the points from the all the teams from each club and dividing each team total by the number of club teams.

On that basis, Bluenose’s teams skipped by Ellen Fanning, Michelle Johnson and Tracy Dawson secured an 18.66 average, while New Caledonian Curling Club of Pictou had a 17.25 score from its four teams. Stellar Curling Club’s two teams had 16 points and Westville’s team had a 14.4 score.

Westville’s five teams were skipped by Coulter, as well as Dawn Fraser, Cindy Perrin, Yvonne Legere and Devon Chisholm.

New Caledonian won the MacKenzie Cup when it was introduced in 1939 as the MacKenzie Bros. (ladies) competition.

The revival of the Irish Shield competition in Pictou last year was the inspiration for organizing the MacKenzie Cup event and following it up with a similar bonspiel next year in Stellarton.

It was seen as a way for women to enjoy a day-long event like men do with competitions like the McLellan Cup, which is being hosted by the Westville club today and in Pictou on March 20.

From left are Bluenose Curling club skips Michelle Johnson and Tracy Dawson, presenter Belle Sangster and skip Ellen Fanning with the MacKenzie Cup the three teams combined to win in Westville. (Goodwin photo)