The Northwest Territories and Yukonrink might not rack up the wins at the Canadian mixed curling championships, but they are enjoying their time as ambassadors for one of Canada's lesser-known regions.
"Most people are genuinely interested in where we're from," said Robert McLeod, second on the rink skipped by Manny Avey.
"We should have brought a map."
Despite falling to 0-5 following an 11-3 loss to Trent Skanes's Newfoundland and Labrador rink at the Westmount Golf and Country Club, they're having a good time in Kitchener, Ont.
They're sightseeing when they can and meeting people and talking about their home in the western part of theNorthwest Territoriesby the Beaufort Sea.
"We're below the tree line," Arey said. "We've got trees, we've got mountains, we've got a delta.
"We've got it all. And whatever was left over came down this way."
Arey and his third, Evelyn Storr, are from Aklavik, a town of 630 people. McLeod and his wife, Judy, are from Inuvik, population 3,500.
They are 15 minutes apart by air, an hour and a half by ice road in the winter, and two hours apart by boat in the summer.
Plenty of action
Also in the afternoon draw, Manitoba's Terry McNamee edged Ted Appelman of Alberta 6-5.
New Brunswick's Terry Odishaw won 8-5 over Brad Kuhn of British Columbia in nine ends, and Prince Edward Island's Mike Gaudet edged Northern Ontario's Mike Phillips 7-6.
Monday morning, Nova Scotia's Alan Darragh hung on to beat Arey 7-6.
Defending champion John Epping of Ontario won 8-5 over Odishaw, while Quebec's Eve Bolisle beat Gaudet 5-3.
Saskatchewan's Brad Heidt won 8-7 over Appelman.
In Monday's late draw, undefeated Quebec improved to 5-0 overall with a 9-8 victory over Northern Ontario.
Manitoba and Ontario each rose to 4-1.
Manitoba scored a 9-2 win over Saskatchewan, and Ontario prevailed 7-4 over B.C.
Newfoundland beat Darragh 7-5.
The Northwest Territories-Yukon rink is using the tournament to get familiar with one another as curlers.
"The first time we curled here was the first time we curled together as a team," said McLeod, who represents Inuvik as a Member of the Legislative Assembly in the Territories.
They weren't together before because Storr broke her wrist and didn't participate in the qualifiers for the mixed championship.
"It's been a long process to get here," McLeod said.