Hospitable North Bay hosts first World Curling Championship

The Ford World Women's Curling Championship 2018 is on course for its debut in North Bay, Ontario, Canada, from 17 to 25 March at the North Bay Memorial Gardens.

A four-hour drive north from Toronto, Ontario, situated in Northern Ontario is North Bay, a community of 53,000 residents, known for their hospitality. It will be the first time the city will host a World Curling Federation event, but it isn't the first-time curling has visited the area. The 2015 Canadian Mixed Curling Championship had a successful event in the city as well, but in a different venue.

Mayor of North Bay, Al McDonald says the city is eager to host the championship: “Our community is very proud to host this year's championship and are thankful to the many sponsors and volunteers who are making this nine day event possible. We have a fantastic local organising committee and strong partnership with Curling Canada. We look forward to welcoming the world to North Bay later this month.”

The North Bay Memorial Gardens has space for 4,200 fans to enjoy the best women's teams on the planet perform under the world spotlight. The arena, built in 1955, is home to the Ontario Hockey League team, the North Bay Battalions and is owned by the co-founder of the famous board game, Trivial Pursuit, Scott Abbott. The venue underwent a significant 12-million-dollar renovation in the 2014 season, after hosting the 2013 World Ringette Championship.

Ringette was invented in North Bay in 1963 and is a combination of floor hockey and lacrosse.

This will be the second time the World Women's Curling Championship will be played in the province of Ontario - the first time being in Hamilton, in 1996. The championship was last on Canadian soil in 2016, in Swift Current, Saskatchewan, where Switzerland's Binia Feltscher captured the title. Feltscher is included amongst the 2018 teams, looking to make her Canadian World Women's success a common occurrence, given she also won the 2014 event in Saint John, New Brunswick.

Rounding out the 2018 field are the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018 champions, Anna Hasselborg of Sweden and silver medallists, EunJung Kim of Korea, as well as the hosts represented by 2014 Olympic champion, Jennifer Jones of Canada.

The Ford World Women's is bound to turn heads from all corners of the globe after the booming success curling teams had at the Olympic Winter Games last month. There are guaranteed to be new curling fans tuning in to catch their favourite Olympic squads in action, as well as exposure to new skips and teams, who are fresh on the international stage.

Mayor McDonald says he is honoured and ready to welcome the world to North Bay: “This championship is important not only for the sport, but also for our community. Having North Bay selected to host the Ford World Women's Curling Championship is an honour and we look forward to welcoming athletes, media and spectators for the event as well as encouraging future visitors to North Bay. We are proudly a four season destination located a short drive from Toronto. We invite you to attend the championship beginning on March 17 and you can learn more about our truly northern experiences by visiting Tourism North Bay.”

To engage with the World Curling Federation on social media in the build to the Ford World Women's Curling Championship 2018 follow it on Twitter, Instagram (@worldcurling) and Facebook (/WorldCurlingFederation) and use the hashtags when posting: #WWCC2018 #curling