The United States Senior Men’s Curling Association was founded in the fall of 1976. The founding board members were looking to establish a National Championship for men over the age of 55. From the beginning, the Spirit of Curling has guided the event–fair competition with an emphasis on camaraderie and the lasting friendships that people develop through curling.
The first Championship Event was held at the Madison (Wisconsin) Curling Club in February 1977, a full 25 years before the USCA began its senior curling competition. The event has generally been held in the Midwest because many of the participants come from that section of the country. However, the Championships have become a truly national event, drawing teams from as far away as Alaska, New England, the West Coast, Texas, and North Carolina. Teams from more than 18 states have participated in this Championship Event.
The early events met with great success and teams began returning year after year. As they did so, some teams found themselves competing against much younger teams and expressed a wish to continue competing against teams their own age. In response, in 1994 the USSMCA board established a second championship category called the Super Seniors, in which all the curlers are required to be at least 63 years of age. The same reasoning applied in 2002 when a third championship was established, the Masters, with a minimum age of 68. This three-tiered division has been very popular, especially among the teams that have participated for many years and now are curling well into their 70’s and 80’s.
In the early years, the event did not have a limit on the number of teams that could participate. This led to having up to 96 teams registered for the event but increased the required time to curl and caused an extra day to be added on Wednesday. More recently, the USSMCA board has chosen to cap the number of teams at 64. This has worked to the best interest of all participants and has broadened the number of clubs that can host the event. The required number of sheets is 8 and may be a combination of two or more clubs in close proximity.
Curling is a lifetime sport and the USSMCA welcomes stick curlers. In fact, we depend on them.