A Southern Alberta city with a rich history of hosting top-notch curling events will add another major championship to its portfolio by welcoming the world’s most famous national curling championship.
The 2022 Tim Hortons Brier™ will be staged at the ENMAX Centre in Lethbridge, Alta., it was announced today by Curling Canada.
The 93rd edition of the Canadian men’s curling championship will be played March 4-13, and will make Lethbridge just the fourth city that has hosted all four major Season of Champions events — the Tim Hortons Brier, the Scotties Tournament of Hearts, the World Men’s Championship and the World Women’s Championship. The others are Winnipeg, Brandon, Man., and Saint John, N.B.
“We’ve seen in the past what the great people in the City of Lethbridge can do when presented with the opportunity to host Season of Champions events, so to say that we’re excited to be heading back is an understatement,” said Mitch Minken, Chair of Curling Canada’s Board of Governors. “A first-class city, a first-class facility and first-class curling fans and volunteers make for a first-class championship, and this is truly something that we can all look forward to.”
The ENMAX Centre is home to the Western Hockey League’s Lethbridge Hurricanes, and seats around 5,400 for curling events. It most recently hosted the 2019 World Men’s Curling Championship, with Sweden’s Niklas Edin prevailing in the final over Canada’s Kevin Koe.
Also staged there were the 2012 World Women’s Curling Championship (won by Switzerland’s Mirjam Ott) and the 1987 (won by B.C.’s Pat Sanders) and 2007 (won by B.C.’s Kelly Scott) Scotties Tournament of Hearts.
“As the host of the 2022 Tim Hortons Brier™, we couldn’t be more excited to welcome curling fans from across the country to Lethbridge for one of the biggest sporting events in our nation,” said Lethbridge Mayor Chris Spearman. “As we all look forward to the time when we can all come together again, this event will be a bright light for residents and visitors alike. It will bringing a strong boost to our local economy and showcase our beautiful city to the rest of Canada.”
In addition to the events noted above, Lethbridge also has hosted the 2017 World Mixed Doubles (won by Switzerland’s Jenny Perret and Martin Rios) and World Senior Men’s and Women’s championships (won by Sweden’s Mats Wråna and Canada’s Colleen Jones), the 2000 (won by Alberta’s Kevin Koe) and 1976 (won by B.C.’s Tony Eberts) Canadian Mixed championships, and the 2003 Canadian Senior Men’s and Women’s championships (won by Alberta’s Tom Reed and Saskatchewan’s Nancy Kerr).
“After 2020 and the year that it was, people are looking for bright lights of hope to look forward to,” said Nathan Neudorf, MLA for Lethbridge East. “Lethbridge winning the host city honours for the 2022 Tim Hortons Brier™ is a VERY bright light for our community! I would like to congratulate and commend the Lethbridge Curling Club for its great efforts to bring the Brier, and Canada, to Lethbridge. And I look forward to the curling celebration this event will be.”
The 2022 Tim Hortons Brier™ will celebrate the 18th year of title sponsorship from Tim Hortons, Canada’s largest restaurant chain operating in the quick-service industry.
“We’re extremely excited to be partnering with Curling Canada for the 18th year as the City of Lethbridge hosts the 2022 Tim Hortons Brier™,” said Chris Wakefield, Lead, Regional Marketing and Sponsorships for Tim Hortons. “Sports are so uniquely engrained into the fabric of Tim Hortons, and a hot coffee goes hand in hand with a day at the rink. Like all curling fans from coast to coast to coast, we can’t wait to watch the 2022 Tim Hortons Brier in Lethbridge.”
Alberta has played host to the Canadian men’s curling championship on 14 previous occasions since the event’s inception in 1927, and with the 2021 Tim Hortons Brier™, presented by AGI, scheduled to staged in Calgary as part of Curling Canada’s Hub City concept, the Lethbridge edition of the Tim Hortons Brier™ will mark the 16th Alberta-hosted Canadian men’s championship.
“Alberta curling fans and volunteers have a proud history of supporting championship curling,” said Jill Richard, Executive Director of Curling Alberta. “I know Lethbridge has wanted to host the Tim Hortons Brier™ for many years, so I’m very excited to see this happen, and I have every expectation that the event will be a huge success in showcasing the sport and the City of Lethbridge.”
The 2022 Tim Hortons Brier™ champion will represent Canada at the World Men’s Championship a few weeks later (dates, location to be announced by the World Curling Federation). As well, the winning team will get a return trip to play as Team Canada at the 2023 Tim Hortons Brier™.
“We have a lot of people in Lethbridge who’ve considered playing host to the Tim Hortons Brier™ a bucket-list opportunity, and to say there’s some excitement spreading around our city is an understatement,” said Kirk Mearns, who along with Mike Mulroy will serve as a vice-chair of the Lethbridge host committee. “It’s going to be an exciting, but busy, 14 months leading up to that opening rock, but Lethbridge is ready to get to work to make this a world-class event.”
Tickets for the 2022 Tim Hortons Brier are expected to go on sale later this year.
The Tim Hortons Brier™ has been played in 31 cities across Canada, from Victoria to St. John’s, N.L. Alberta-based teams have won a leading 29 Brier championships, followed by Manitoba with 27. New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, the Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut have yet to win.