Synchronized Swimming, Curling and Other Local Pastimes
by Laura Kocum
on Friday, April 15th, 2016 at 10:35pm.
Madison is an eclectic place. The variety of restaurants, shopping and activities make it possible to experience so much variety for the size of our city. Take a look at the activities happening around town, and you get an idea of the possibilities:
More than just splashing and smiling, Mad City Aqua Stars offers a club sport that requires athletes to learn a number of complicated and graceful underwater moves. Swimmers age 8-18 are included in both recreational and competitive teams. Over the weekend, the team hosted the Wisconsin Association Synchronized Swimming Championship at the Middleton Area Indoor Pool. The top three teams in each division are moving on to regional competitions. From there, the top regional finishers will go the Junior Olympics. This club provides synchronized swimming lessons, and has teams that compete both regionally and nationally. Mad City Aqua Stars has qualified for the Junior Olympics for the last four years, and they are aiming to compete there again this year. A spring showcase is scheduled for May 1, also at the Middleton Area Indoor Pool. Admission is $3 for adults and children are free. The program is one hour long, and begins at 2 p.m.
This is a serious past time for several locals. Played on ice, curling involves sending round, flat stones towards a mark. Team members use brooms to sweep the ice and control the direction and speed of the stone. The Madison Curling Club boasts two members that won Bronze in the World Championships last week. And a local women's team won first place at the National Curling Competition, also this month. The Club is located in McFarland, and provides curling lessons and leagues for beginners and more advanced players. Youth leagues start at age 8, and adult leagues include highly competitive teams and groups of players with five years of experience or less. The game can be learned, and is a popular team building activity for local businesses. Additionally, it is an accessible game, and wheelchairs can be used by players. The season typically kicks off in the fall, and continues through the spring. Pick up games happen on Saturday mornings. An annual membership is required to participate in the Madison Curling Club events and leagues.
This sport includes two teams, competing to get a frisbee passed down a field. It is a non-contact sport, but includes aggressive moves to block the opponents' frisbee from making a complete pass. The Madison Ultimate Frisbee Association (MUFA) offers leagues year round. There are beginner leagues, youth leagues starting at age 14, and competitive leagues that all take place around town. MUFA also coordinates High School teams throughout Dane County. Additional pick-up games are found at Vilas Park on the weekends. Interested in viewing a game? The Madison Radicals competes at Historic Breese Stevens Field, and plays teams from all over the region. Their first game of the season was April 9, with more than 1000 fans in attendance.
No matter what your interest, on water, ice or land, you are sure to find an event or activity in Madison to keep you entertained, and make new friends.