Plans Well Under Way For Pondarama Curling & Hockey Event in Gananoque Feb 4-6, 2011 Gananoque, 1000 Islands

For 2012 Pondarama has been renamed  1000 Islands Pondapalooza
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Gananoque will play host to the new 1000 Islands Pond Hockey and World Pond Curling Championships on the shores of the St. Lawrence River February 4-6, 2011.

pond hockey curling gananoque 1000 islands innWith more than a dozen hockey teams and over 20 curling teams the early bird registration fee has been extended for both events.
The 1000 Islands Pond Hockey Championships are set to drop the puck Friday night starting at 5pm. Players will play four on four under lights using traditional pond hockey rules. Although there’s no goalies;  nets are provided and are six feet wide by 10 inches high making this a unique game to be enjoyed by all. Teams are allowed a maximum of 6 players and the winner of the hockey will get a bye into the Beaver Cup held at Winterlude.
The Early Bird Registration Fee is $350/team and teams are guaranteed at least three games throughout the weekend.
Also Rockin’ out on Friday night is the World Pond Curling Championships. Teams of four will use standard curling rules outdoors using mother nature’s ice. Teams are guaranteed three games at least throughout the weekend and winners will get bragging rights for this new annual event.
Event organizers have been meeting with the local Fire Chief and firefighters  and are not concerned at this point about the ice and are optimistic that these events will take place on the St. Lawrence River as long as the weather cooperates from this point on. “We have discussed a guide for the ice thickness and knowing that we are up against mother nature have created a comprehensive backup plan so that the weekend still goes on regardless”, replies Lori Higgs, co-organizer.  “Test holes will start at any time and safety is of the most importance to us”, replies Higgs. “I am confident either way that this will be a great weekend”. “Spectators will be allowed to watch the events on the docks and on land”.
Also scheduled on Saturday is a Family Skate area where spectators can enjoy a leisurely skate, beer tent, chip truck, wagon rides uptown, town park events and to end Saturday’s schedule will be a huge Pondarama Bonfire and Hot Chocolate Family Night.
Sunday morning teams will continue to fight for the title while the family skate, beer tent and chip truck will be on location again.
“A new Oval Sprint Contest is set to start a 12:00 noon and participants or spectators can test their skating skills and challenge other participants. The cost is $20 and contestants will receive a t-shirt. Registration will be that day and all we ask is that those entering bring a helmet with a full mask”, replies Higgs.
Also on Sunday is our Celebrity Hockey Challenge at 1:00pm. “This year we have the Ottawa Senators Alumni and friends taking on the Toronto Maple Leaf Alumni with friends.
A couple of the players making their Celebrity Challenge debut are Rick Smith and Ed Staniowski.
Ed Staniowski is a Canadian former professional ice hockey goaltender who played for the St. Louis Blues, Winnipeg Jets and Hartford Whalers in the National Hockey League. He played 219 games in his NHL career between 1975 and 1985, winning 67, losing 104 and tying 21. He was a Western Canada Hockey League First Team All-Star in 1975 while playing with the Regina Pats, and was named the inaugural recipient of the CHL Player of the Year Award.
Ed Staniowski served in the Canadian Forces after retiring from hockey, reaching the rank of lieutenant colonel in the primary reserve. His military career has included “numerous” deployments, including as senior Canadian advisor to the Armed Forces of Sierra Leone.
Rick Smith was originally drafted by the Boston Bruins in the second round (7th overall) in the 1966 NHL Amateur Draft. He played in Boston from 1968–69 to 1971–72. In 1972 he joined the California Golden Seals of the NHL. He played there until the end of the next season (1972–73) when he left the NHL for the World Hockey Association (WHA) and played for the Minnesota Fighting Saints. In 1975–76 Smith returned to the NHL to play for the St. Louis Blues. He would remain with the Blues until the 1976–77 NHL season when he returned to the Boston Bruins. In 1980 Rick Smith would leave Boston to play one more NHL season split between the Detroit Red Wings (11 games) and the Washington Capitals (40 games). He won the Stanley Cup with the Boston Bruins in 1970. “We’re excited for the game and the celebrities coming are going to make it a fun and well worth watching game”, replies Higgs.
Organizers are looking for volunteers throughout the weekend and anyone interested can contact Lori Higgs at The Gananoque Inn & Spa at 613.382.1800 ext 399 or by e-mail at Programs with a list of events will be out for distribution within the next week.
For more information or to register a team visit or
Or contact:
Lori Higgs
Sales & Marketing Associate
The Gananoque Inn & Spa
550 Stone Street, S., Gananoque, 1000 Islands, Ontario K7G 2A8
Ph 613.382.1800 ext 399 Toll Free: 888.565.3101
Fax: 613.382.0252   E-mail: