#6 Fun and (Seniors) Games

Year in Review: The BC Seniors Games brought 3,200 athletes ages 55 and up to the West Kootenay

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It was a year in the making and went off without a hitch.

The BC Seniors Games brought 3,200 athletes ages 55 and up to the West Kootenay for a week in August in an outstanding show of co-operation between Nelson, Castlegar, and Trail.

While Trail got to host the opening ceremonies (where the Rhythm Ropers were featured entertainers) and Castlegar held the closing ceremonies, Nelson was the venue for hockey, table tennis, cycling, and dragonboating — as well as cribbage and one-act plays.

The weather was spectacular and accommodators enjoyed nearly solid bookings.

We also had more than our share of athletes raking in hardware — West Kootenay trailed only Fraser Valley in the final medal count among the 12 zones — and Nelson’s Wilma Turner was one of the most intriguing.

Turner, 81, entered nine swimming events and earned medals in eight. She hadn’t swam competitively since she was 18.

She won gold in the women’s 4 x 25 m freestyle relay team, plus seven medals for individual events, including different freestyle and backstroke lengths.

“I was just shocked every time I got out of the pool,” she laughed.

But the biggest applause was reserved for the hundreds of volunteers who made it happen, led in Nelson by co-chair Bill Reid.

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