by Jacob Noseworthy
City Park hosted the first Kettle River Classic ultimate tournament this past weekend, July 16 – 17.
Ultimate, also known as Ultimate Frisbee, is a non-contact, seven-a-side sport, played with a flying disc. The teams score points by passing the disc to a teammate in their opponents’ end zone.
The tournament, organized by the Grand Forks Ultimate Disc Club, brought a variety of competitors from Grand Forks, the surrounding area, and as far away as the Lower Mainland.
“We had about 55 people out here this weekend,” organizer Dan Macmaster said. “We had people from all over the Boundary, the Kootenays, and even some people from Maple Ridge.”
The Classic ran as a “hat tournament” where players join individually rather than as a team and the teams are formed by randomly selecting names from a hat forming four teams. It was a co-ed tournament, as well, with both men and women on the field at all teams for both teams.
In the thrilling final of the tournament, team Innuendoh (note: the spelling is intentionally wrong) took the trophy with a win over team Stranger Danger.
The events of the weekend also featured disc skills competitions, as well as a Saturday night social event for the competitors and their families.
The level of play throughout the weekend was strong and impressed Macmaster.
“I think the high level of skill and the high level of spirit stood out,” he said. “It was really great to see the variety of people coming from all different areas and coming together to make teams that are made up of strangers.”
The organizers considered the tournament to be a success and already have plans for the future.
“The tournament will be an annual thing in July,” Macmaster said. “We’ll hopefully expand to six teams and keep bringing in more people, as well.
Macmaster also discussed the Grand Forks Ultimate Disc Club that inspired the tournament.
“We’re a league that plays all year long but we’re at City Park during the summer,” he said. “We’re here on Mondays and Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. and Sundays at 5 p.m.”
The club is open to anyone who is interested in Ultimate or wants to learn.
“Everyone is invited,” he continued. “New people, experienced people, even kids and parents. Everyone is invited to come out and learn the game too. We’ll be running year round and when it gets cold out, we’ll go inside the [Perley Elementary School] gym.”
Below, the winners show off the Kettle River Classic trophy. Members of the team from Grand Forks were Seth Edwards, Graham Watt and Jessica Mace.