If, like me, you haven't paid much attention to the Casino Rama Skins, you will probably be a bit more interested in this made-for-television Canadian event next season. What happens is that four teams are invited to play skins on a lane of ice specially constructed within Casino Rama, which is in Ontario. The event is televised by TSN. Last season Glenn Howard, Randy Ferbey, Kevin Martin and Jennifer Jones skipped the four teams. This coming season, the first three of these will be joined by David Murdoch's team, the world champions. It will be the first time that a European team has been invited to participate.
Casino Rama has been operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week, since 1996. The venue has more than 2,500 slot machines, more than 110 table games, ten restaurants and a world-class, 5,000-seat, entertainment centre. There's a 300-room hotel with a spa and and health club. It is Ontario's only First Nations commercial casino, and is operated by Penn National Gaming, Inc. Casino Rama is the largest single site employer of aboriginal people in Canada with more than 700 aboriginal employees.
The entertainment centre has featured shows by Faith Hill, Diana Ross, Chicago, David Copperfield, Dolly Parton, Carrie Underwood, Robin Williams, Stevie Nicks, Michael Bolton, Barenaked Ladies and Crosby, Stills and Nash.
But it's our sport of curling that will be the big attraction at the casino, January 16-17. There are some photos here, showing Randy Ferbey and his team with their $70,000 winners' cheque last season.
It's Team Murdoch which features on the cover of the special souvenir edition of the Scottish Curler magazine which is on its way to subscribers this week.
This magazine has been produced by Ayrshire Weekly Press, a Division of Clyde & Forth Press. Caroline Paterson is the managing editor of the publication now.
Ayrshire Weekly Press produces a number of magazines, as well as local newspapers.