Surrey’s Tyler Tardi is among 15 athletes featured in a new Men of Curling fundraising calendar.
Curlers from four countries were invited to be shown in the 2020 calendar, and Tardi is the lone B.C. resident featured.
Tardi, 21, a three-time national junior and two-time world junior men’s curling champion, lives in Cloverdale and curls out of Langley Curling Centre.
Over the summer, he said he was surprised and honoured to receive an email inviting him to be featured in the calendar.
“I didn’t really believe it at first,” Tardi said Wednesday. “I didn’t expect to get that email, an invitation, but I wasn’t hesitant at all, because it’s a pretty big deal. It’s cool to be involved.… This calendar is very well known in the curling world.”
Each curler sets up his own photo shoot for the calendar to raise funds for a charity, or charities, of his choice.
For his photo, Tardi went rock climbing and brought along a curling rock as a prop.
“I was struggling a lot figuring out what to do (for the photo),” Tardi explained. “I do a little bit of rock climbing and found a location in Kelowna, in mid-August.”
The 40-pound rock became an issue as he hauled it through trails and uphill.
“I had to take a few breaks, not going to lie,” he said with a laugh. “That was quite a grind.”
Men of Curling calendars for 2020 can now be pre-ordered online for $34.95 at menofcurling.com, with shipping in mid-October.
For some calendar proceeds, Tardi’s two chosen charities are Curling Canada Foundation, which gave him a For the Love of Curling scholarship in 2016, and Childhood Cancer Family Support, a cause inspired by the work of his dad and longtime coach, Paul Tardi.
Other curlers featured in the calendar are fellow Canadians John Epping, Geoff Walker, Craig Savill, Brad Thiessen, Kirk Muyres, Connor Njegovan, Robbie Doherty and Team Bottcher, along with Korey Dropkin of the U.S., Scotland’s Bruce Mouat and Japan’s Tsuyoshi Yamaguchi.
The calendar includes a list of all 2019-20 curling event dates along with photos and bios of the athlete models.
“I haven’t seen the full page yet in the calendar, and I’m excited to see how it turns out,” Tardi said.
Tardi is now curling as an adult, ending his spectacular career as a junior.
“We’ve had two events so far (this season), and qualified for playoffs in both,” Tardi said. “We’ve got a long road ahead of us, and it’s a lot busier of a season than we’ve had in the past.”
Team Tardi includes Tyler Tardi as skip, Sterling Middleton as third, Jordan Tardi – Tyler’s older brother – as second and Alex Horvath as lead.
With the team now on the men’s curling circuit, it means Tyler Tardi – who still had a year of junior eligibility – won’t compete in Langley at the 2020 New Holland Canadian Junior Men’s and Women’s Curling Championships, held at George Preston Recreation Centre from Jan. 18 to 26.
“I’ll be there to volunteer, but I won’t be playing in it,” Tardi said. “That was a tough decision, with it being held in Langley.”
Next up for Team Tardi is a tournament in Vernon at the end of September.