Regular activities on hold like so many other groups, the Elmira Lawn Bowling Club is back in action again. The group held a tournament last Saturday that saw 14 teams compete from across the region.
The pandemic has been hard on the club, said Susan Brooks, the organization’s past-president.
“To be quite honest, for two years, [there was] totally nothing. And then we had (people) come and bring their own bowls and bowl outside. And even now, people are extremely cautious. Visits usually happen on the porch,” she explained.
“But, I have to say, people got sick of being inside and doing nothing. And I think that’s one of the reasons why our membership this year has gone up – people are looking for some fun things to do in a safe manner.”
The sport, akin to playing curling on a lawn, is open to everyone, says Brooks, who notes she got involved in the game to support her husband who had been heavily involved but saw membership dropping. She realized that the game was very similar to the game of curling, so she introduced it to the curling club.
“People just didn’t know about it. So I got in and I went to the curling club in the winter and said ‘Come on, let’s try curling on grass in the summer,’ and we got a lot of new members from the curling club that way.
“We are getting younger members who are going to work during the day and coming out and lawn bowling in the evening… I hosted the Woolwich Community Centre camp a few weeks ago. They brought some kids over and they decided to walk over,” said Brooks. “And they just had a ball. It was laughter the whole time, so much fun.”
The club has bounced back from the pandemic, she adds.
“Our own club has come back after COVID. More people have joined in the last couple of years, and we’re really pleased that we’re back.”
First place for Saturday’s tournament went to Gloria Rudney and Rob Brooks of the Elmira Lawn Bowling Club. Second place to Peggy Wappler and Darcy Weber, also from the Elmira club.
The next tournament will be the annual ‘meat tournament’ on September 17, with the Elmira Meat Market donating cuts of meat as prizes to the winners. “It’s a very popular one,” said Brooks. “People love it.” A members-only tournament on September 24 will finish up the season.
Anyone is invited to come out and try lawn bowling, says Brooks. The club is located beside Park Manor Public School on Mockingbird Drive, with members meeting Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday nights.
If it’s your first time out, come at 6:45 p.m. to get situated, says Brooks. The games start at 7 p.m. To learn more, contact Susan Brooks at 519-669-1052.