One of the most popular winter sports in Berwick since the 1950’s has been curling. It was particularly popular during the 1960’s and 70’s when Berwick had very competitive teams in a number of curling divisions. Most major curling tournaments at the time were, and continue to this day to be, dominated by rinks from large curling clubs in the major urban areas. This fact makes the achievement of the 1973 Senior Ladies’ Curling team from Berwick all the more remarkable.
Despite raising large families, this group of dedicated women found time to form a team of highly competitive curlers – combining skill, hard work and family devotion to bring a provincial championship to the small Nova Scotia town of Berwick.
In a year that offered the challenges of family commitments, a hectic curling schedule and various tournaments, the quartet of Vivian Bezanson, Helen Kervin, Mildred Stewart, and Mildred Woodworth solidified as a cohesive team at just the right time. The group was curling their best leading into the Nova Scotia Senior Ladies Curling Championship hosted that year at the Bridgetown Curling Club. Not worrying about hog line violations and time clocks, the Berwick foursome pounded their corn brooms through a field of 20 teams from Metro to rural Nova Scotia eventually finishing up on the final Monday to square off with the Liverpool team for the championship. Because of previous play, Liverpool had to beat the Berwick rink twice to win the championship. After a shaky first game, which the Liverpool team won, the Berwick group found the skill and poise that was their hallmark through the previous tournament games and won the final game to claim the ultimate prize – the 1973 Nova Scotia Senior Ladies Curling Championship!
With a fire Department escort, the championship team received a hero’s welcome back in Berwick for their tremendous accomplishment. 1973 also marked the first year for the Canadian Senior Ladies Championship and the Berwick rink went on to represent Nova Scotia with a strong showing at the national tournament.
1973 Berwick Senior Ladies Curling Team
Nova Scotia Provincial Champions
Inducted June 1999
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Lieutenant Governor Community Spirit Award
Sports Hall of Fame