Curling World mourns the passing of Ice Pioneer

Long time Canadian icemaker Clarence (Shorty) Jenkins, known equally for the swingy ice that he produced and the pink hat he wore while doing it, died on Thursday after a lengthy illness. He was 77.

Photo, courtesy AMJ Campbell Shorty Jenkins Classic

Jenkins was one of the first icemakers to start experimenting with water, scraping patterns and stones, always in search of a little more crowd-pleasing swing in the ice.

"I don't think there's a doubt that he's the most influential icemaker ever," said longtime Canadian Curling Association ice technician Dave Merklinger, who got his start in the business working alongside Jenkins at the CFB Trenton club in Ontario.

"He reinvented the game of curling by making the ice entertaining, by making it consistent to allow curlers to make shot after shot after shot and play with confidence."

He worked on events for the World Curling Federation the last being the 2000 Millennium World Championships which took place at Braehead Arena, Glasgow.

In addition to the work he did on the ice for the WCF and the Canadian Curling Association, he also developed instructional manuals on the craft of making ice. Jenkins was eager to share his knowledge with his peers wherever he worked or visited.

"Shorty was a colourful character and will long be remembered. The world of curling owes him a huge debt of gratitude for his pioneer work and our thoughts are with his family at this sad time" said WCF President Kate Caithness