"Anyone who has been to one will remember it for the rest of their lives.
January 11, 2010 9:33 AM   Subscribe

to be held for the first time in 30 years, the 'Grand Match' has been canceled due to safety fears.

The Royal Caledonian Curling Club announced on Friday that the rare bonspiel would be canceled because emergency services would have difficulty ensuring the safety of the nearly 2000 participants and an estimated 15 to 20,000 spectators at the Lake of Menteith due to narrow icy roads, bitter cold and poor access for crowds, a decision that defending world curling champion David Murdoch called "ridiculous". Some believe that the "real" reason is due to insurance and lawsuit concerns over the thickness of the ice, and speculate that "There will be no 'official' Grand Matches ever again."

Note the word 'official' above, as there have been calls for an unsanctioned Grand Match, including a Facebook group encouraging folks to come down to the Lake of Menteith and “Bring your stones, bring your skates if you prefer, or just bring your self. Take heed of the warnings but do it anyway". On Saturday around 2000 people did...
posted by horsemuth (9 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I thought is was a record cold this year in Scotland. Of course, ice thickness is a function not only of temperature, but various hydrological conditions like currents and whether the ice is snow-covered.

There is nothing better than playing hockey or curling on open ice like this.
posted by clvrmnky at 9:42 AM on January 11, 2010

No true Scotsman would fear for his safety.
posted by Joe Beese at 9:44 AM on January 11, 2010 [7 favorites]

I guess they don't have the stones to curl.
posted by blue_beetle at 9:53 AM on January 11, 2010 [5 favorites]

That stinks. On ice.
posted by GuyZero at 10:11 AM on January 11, 2010

I thought is was a record cold this year in Scotland

The article says the 'bitter cold' was one of the reasons to cancel the event. Which would suggest it will be difficult to get permission in future.
posted by biffa at 11:18 AM on January 11, 2010

We used to shovel (snow-blow) off part of the lake and play boot hockey on holidays in Minnesota. Hike up yer kilts and get playing, laddies.
posted by wenestvedt at 1:11 PM on January 11, 2010

Cauld feet.
posted by pracowity at 3:19 PM on January 11, 2010

Dagnabitt! I was planning to go if they held it ('s only 20 mins away), hadn't heard about the unofficial one :/

Seems my brother flew over and got a pic of it the day before, complete with a couple of rinks: http://www.frogwell.com/gallery/v/2010/january/8th/Frozen+Lake+of+Menteith.html
posted by titus-g at 8:20 PM on January 11, 2010 [3 favorites]

Awesome photo! That is some fine-looking ice. I expect some people will be playing a fine game, insurance or not.
posted by GuyZero at 9:53 AM on January 12, 2010

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