Manitoba Music Rocks Charity Curling Bonspiel Raises $10,000 for Unison Benevolent Fund

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Manitoba’s music community rocked the house for charity this month. Over 140 curlers joined event organizers Manitoba Music and Manitoba Film & Music at the 2013 Manitoba Music Rocks Charity Curling Bonspiel at the Granite Curling Club on February 10. The annual event, which sold out quickly, brought the province's vibrant music community together to raise funds and awareness for the Unison Benevolent Fund.

In the bonspiel’s three-year history, it has raised over $10,000 for the Unison Fund, landing media and national industry attention in the process.

“Manitoba is home to an extremely talented and generous music community and the Manitoba Music Rocks Charity Curling Bonspiel proves that,” said Manitoba Music's executive director, Sara Stasiuk, who also sits on the Unison Fund's board of directors. “It’s great to be able to do our part, get the word out, and help the Unison Benevolent Fund reach its goal to provide this critical assistance to our artists and industry workers with such a fun event.”

The Unison Benevolent Fund is an assistance and referral program – created and administered by the music industry, for the music industry. A registered charity established in 2010, the Unison Benevolent Fund is designed to provide discreet relief to music industry personnel in times of personal hardship and crisis.

Leading up to the bonspiel, Breakfast Television Winnipeg teamed up with indie pop act Indicator Indicator to produce a music video of his new original song, “Let Me Introduce Curling”. Shot primarily at the historic Granite Curling Club, the video also features curling co-stars JP Hoe and Oh My Darling’s Vanessa Kuzina. The new video joined five already-produced videos of fun curling tips from some of Manitoba’s best-known musician curlers, including acclaimed singer/songwriter John K. Samson, Comeback Kid’s Jeremy Hiebert, DJ extraordinaire Mama Cutsworth, and acoustic pop troubadour JP Hoe, as well as Stasiuk and Manitoba Film & Music’s CEO & Film Commissioner Carole Vivier. The videos aired on Breakfast Television, streamed on the Citytv website, and racked up a few thousand views on YouTube. Click here to watch all the videos.

The bonspiel itself drew some familiar faces from the music world, including The Weakerthans' Stephen Carroll, Imaginary Cities’ Rusty Matyas, Oh My Darling’s Vanessa Kuzina; representatives from Winnipeg’s live music scene, including the Winnipeg Folk Festival, West End Cultural Centre, Pyramid Cabaret, Casinos of Winnipeg, and Big Fun Festival; among many others.

The Manitoba Music Rocks Charity Curling Bonspiel was made possible by the support of the following sponsors: SOCAN, Half Pints Brewing Co., Breakfast Television Winnipeg, Special T Shirt Company, DigginIT, Guppy Graphic Design, Fairmont Winnipeg, Long & McQuade, Payworks, and The Forks. Thanks also to the many individuals and companies that donated prizes to the silent auction, and to the volunteers who helped out during the event.

While a date and location have yet to be confirmed, the fourth annual Manitoba Music Rocks Charity Curling Bonspiel will be held in early 2014.

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