Smillie family draws to the button with $5,000 windfall

Curling Rocks

By Terrance Gavan

With only five tickets left in the 105 number elimination draw at the Haliburton Curling club last Sunday, John and Cheryl Smillie settled right into the catbird seat.

The couple had two shared tickets out of the final five.

At stake?

The $10,000 first prize, in the club’s charity draw in support of junior curling in the Highlands.

The real winner here had already been determined a week before when members sold the final ticket in the capped 105 ticket Elimination lottery.

The tickets were $200 per, and junior curling reaps the benefit of a $10,000 infusion, which goes to purchase equipment, brooms, sliders and fund after school and weekend clinics.

John and Cheryl Smillie shared two tickets, one with Wendy and Don Vermeersch –who were away on vacation – and the other with Cheryl’s mom and dad, the Smyth family.

There were catcalls aplenty from the 100 plus ticket holders gathered in the club as John schmoozed at the front of the room, glass of white wine in hand. But when the draw finally dwindled down to two remaining tickets – both belonging to the Smillie’s – there were well wishes and a big round of applause when John announced that he would be splitting the draw between the two tickets.

John and Cheryl take home $5,000, while the Vermeersch and Smyth families win $2,500 apiece.

Club president Bruce Martin said he was proud that the members stepped up to sell out the draw.

He added that he was happy that the club can now go forward with its stated commitment to youth curling in the Highlands.