2017 CORE Legacy
Two Local Rugby 'Heroes' To Be Recognized By City
Date: February 4, 2016
Five years ago, the only touch rugby played in the Okanagan was 'sillybugger', a fun game universally recognized for teaching horrible rugby habits. Fast forward to 2015, where more than 500 youth and adult players enjoyed the fast, fun, fitness-oriented game of touch rugby. The growth of this new foundational sport for local rugby can be attributed to two men - George Curran and Ken Boe. They will both be recognized on February 10th as part of the City of Kelowna's 'Sport Hero Award' ceremonies.
George's primary touch rugby contribution is the development of the Crows Mini-Rugby program. Described as, "the best sports program for the buck" by parents, this program for 4 - 8 year olds puts a rugby ball in the hands of young boys and girls and provides them with an hour of active minor games. Starting with a handful of players in 2011, the program has grown to over 130 young players last spring. The program also features a progression to 'Touch Sevens', a game played by mixed teams of 9 - 12 year old boys and girls. This new league started last year with 45 players.
The activities for the Crows Mini-Rugby program were developed by Ken Boe, a primary teacher at Bankhead Elementary. However, Ken's key contribution to touch rugby development has been the establishment of a Touch Sevens League in 12 elementary schools. In 2015, 209 grade 4 - 6 players played touch in an inter-school league. This league is expected to expand further this spring. Ken also has helped launch and run the adult Summer Touch Rugby program, which featured 120 local athletes enjoying the game in 2015.
Together, Ken and George enabled more than 500 locals to enjoy the game of touch rugby last year. This is an amazing accomplishment in just five years. All of their programs are projected to grow further in 2016.
"Both George and Ken will tell you that it takes a team to develop a sport in a community," said Doug Manning, CORE President. "They are right - all of their programs require lots of volunteer coaches and helpers to make them successful. However, these two are the 'engines' that drive the touch rugby programs. Without their enthusiasm and many volunteer hours, this sport would not exist in the Central Okanagan."
George and Ken will be recognized at the City of Kelowna's 2016 'Community Sport Hero Awards Ceremony' on Wednesday, February 10th. The ceremony will be held at the Mary Irwin Theatre at 6:00 PM. Tickets are free, you just have to register by February 5th. You can order your free tickets at this website.