Lill Langstrom carpet bowls as fellow bowlers Pearl Ambach (from left), Ellen Wiege and Chris Hornby look on at the Williams Lake Seniors Activity Centre on Monday, Jan. 28. The sport is enjoyed twice a week by players on Mondays and Wednesdays from 1 to 3 p.m. downstairs at the SAC. (Greg Sabatino photo)

Carpet bowling providing fun activity for lakecity residents

Any seniors in the community looking to meet new friends while getting some exercise at the same time are invited to try out the sport of carpet bowling.

Joan Foster, the provincial representative for Zone 8 carpet bowling, said newcomers are welcome to attend the twice-weekly play times Mondays and Wednesdays from 1 to 3 p.m. downstairs at the Seniors Activity Centre.

“We just really need some more people interested,” Foster said, but added a core group of about 10-12 carpet bowlers sporadically attend the scheduled play times.

“It doesn’t matter your skill level,” she said. “We’ll teach you. Come out and try. You’d be amazed how much skill is involved and it’s great exercise, and we’re a great group of people to mix with.”

READ MORE: Williams Lake seniors return triumphant from 55+ Games

Carpet bowling is a variation of indoor bowling, played by using a ‘Jack’ between two teams of players. The jack is bowled, or placed, at the opposing end of the carpet where players then take turns throwing their ‘bowls’ in an attempt to leave the most closest to the jack, similar to curling, or bocce.

“The problem is people get the idea it’s just for old people, and it’s not,” Foster said. “Young seniors thoroughly enjoy this.”

Carpet bowling is also one of many sports being contested at the 55+ BC Seniors Games, which Zone 8 representative Ellen Wiege of Williams Lake noted is quickly approaching.

This year’s 55+ BC Seniors Games take place in Kelowna from Sept. 10-14, and Wiege said, locally, she’s looking to drum up interest and registration in multiple sports.

“We already have floor curlers, carpet bowlers, golfers, track and field athletes and crib players,” Wiege said. “But we’re always looking for more people who want to compete.”

For team sports, such as ice hockey, softball and soccer, players are able to join the Zone 9 team comprised of players from 70 Mile House, 100 Mile House, Barkerville, Bridge Lake, Canim Lake, Forest Grove, Green Lake, Horsefly, Interlakes, Lac La Hache, Likely, Mackenzie, McBride, McLeese Lake, Prince George, Quesnel, Wells and Williams Lake.

READ MORE: Williams Lake crib players off to Seniors Games in Vernon

“We could certainly use more players,” Wiege said.

Sports include: 8-ball, archery, badminton, bocce, bridge, carpet bowling, cribbage, cycling, darts, dragon boating, equestrian, fast pitch, five-pin bowling, floor curling, golf, hockey, horseshoes, ice curling, lawn bowling, mountain biking, pickleball, slo-pitch, snooker, soccer, squash, sturling, swimming, table tennis, tennis, track and field, trap shooting, triathlon and whist.

In preparation, Wiege and players from Zone 9 will host a fundraising dinner coming up April 14 at the Seniors Activity Centre. Tickets will be available in the near future at the SAC, Wiege said.

For more information on the 55+ BC Seniors Games contact Wiege at 250-392-3537.

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