About Plainfield Curling Club

Good people, good times, good curling.

Founded in 1963, the Plainfield Curling Club (PCC) is the only curling club in New Jersey with its own dedicated ice facility. Our club was planned, designed, financed, and literally built by the membership. We’re a not-for-profit organization that’s owned by our members and operates on the hard work and volunteerism of our members. We love our club and hope you do too.

Our curling season runs from October to April with 9 weeknight and weekend leagues for our members to curl in. We also host 9 annual bonspiels (curling tournaments/parties) over the course of the season.

Plainfield Curling Club is located off Exit 4 of Route 287 in South Plainfield, NJ. We’re less than a 10 minute cab ride from either the Metuchen or Edison train stations on NJ Transit’s Northeast Corridor line. Also, you can ask Google how to get here.

Affiliations

Plainfield Curling Club is proudly associated with  the United States Curling Association, the Grand National Curling Club, the United States Women’s Curling Association, and the Mid-Atlantic Curling Association.

USCA

GNCC

USWCA

MACA

The PCC Board

PCC is governed by a 9-person Board of Directors, from which our President, Vice President, Treasurer, and Secretary are elected. Board members are nominated and voted on by the general membership of the club.

Bret Curran

Bret Curran

President

Bret and his wife Colleen joined the club in 2014, not because of the Olympics that year, but because of family members in New Hampshire urging him to try curling for quite some time. In 2016, he completed the Level 1 Instructor Certification and took the helm as organizer of The Curling Experience program. Bret has also assisted with all of the Open House events since becoming a member, as well as designed and managed fundraising shirts and merchandising. You can find Bret on the ice in the Saturday night league.

Committees: Membership, The Curling Experience & Group Outings, Advertising & Media Relations

Mark Szemple

Mark Szemple

Vice President

Hello, my name is Mark Szemple and I have been member of PCC in the fall of 2002. I have served on our Board of Directors in various positions from 2010 – 2016 and was President of the club in 2013/2014.

I started curling after becoming interested in the sport during the 2002 Winter Olympics. After a few years of curling at the club, I introduced my two sons to our juniors curling program. Both of my sons, Ryan and Steven curled together for a few years until Ryan got to high school where his commitment with soccer prevented him from curling as much, but my younger son Steven enjoyed curling and started to become more competitive.

Around this time, the junior instructors whose own children had aged out gave me the opportunity to transition into the role of both Junior Coordinator and instructor. Steven eventually joined a competitive team and has had a great junior curling career having won Junior Nationals in 2015, and finishing 5th at Junior Worlds in Estonia. He also won a silver medal in 2014 and Bronze medals in 2013 & 2016.

Even though Steven has aged out of Juniors, I continue to run our Juniors program along with several other great parents and just thoroughly enjoy working with the kids and watching them grow both in life
and their curling skills.

Some of the other volunteer duties that I do with the club throughout the year are following:
– I coordinate and manage our annual Junior Bonspiel
– I’m your Keymaster. I’m responsible for tracking and assigning club access to our members
– I work with our hotel partner, the Hampton Inns to arrange room blocks for all of our bonspiels
– I’m a Level 1 instructor and help assist with our training sessions we provide to our members
throughout the year.
– Any many other volunteer opportunities that come up as needed.

Dean Roth

Dean Roth

Treasurer

In the spring of 2005, Ed Klug suggested I come down to the Plainfield Curling Club on a Tuesday night and see if I thought it would be a good activity for Boy Scout troops. After his game, he took me on the ice. By the time I threw a second stone, I was hooked. In my first season, I was asked to play in the Kayser (at Broomstones that year) and my fate was sealed.

Since then, I’ve curled in 90 bonspiels in 18 states and 9 countries — actually winning five of them.

On the volunteer side, I spent three years as PCC Membership Chairman — as the club doubled in size after the Vancouver Olympics — two years as Vice President and one year as President. I came up with the idea of selling our group outing syllabus to individuals, and The Curling Experience was born — which I then ran for four years before handing off. I’ve put together curling & sightseeing tours to Iceland, Hungary, Italy, Norway, Spain and Poland. In 2014, I formed Granite & Ice, Inc. (with Dean Gemmell and Chad McMullan) to promote the sport around the greater NYC area. Under our “CurlNYC” brand, we’ve run events in CT, NY and NJ including the recent “Sweep The House” fundraiser in for the Devils Care foundation on the ice in the Prudential Center. We started the Brooklyn Lakeside Curling Club, which became their own 501(c)3 entity at the beginning of this season, and are working with the folks trying to build the Kingsbridge National Ice Center to create a dedicated curling facility in the Bronx.

My craziest curling project was hearing that one of our new members wanted to know how he could curl for his homeland. So I recruited a teammate for him, put together a coaching team, and ended up sitting in the coaches’ box at the World Mixed Doubles Curling Championships in Stavanger, Norway wearing a Ukrainian uniform. It pays to dream big.

Outside of curling, I’m semi-retired from my “real” job managing a machine shop, but keep busy producing theater, promoting curling, and assisting with my wife’s travel agency.

Gail Knight

Gail Knight

Secretary

I have been a member of the Plainfield Curling Club since 1998, joining when Curling was a demonstration sport at the winter Olympics.

In addition to acting as Club Secretary I have retained my roles as the USWCA Representative and administrator of PCC Insurance policies.

Prior to Covid-19 I put together the printed Members Directory and updated the New Member Handout.

I was part of the group of women that organized the Mid-Atlantic Women’s Bonspiel back in 2005 – a Bonspiel that rotates between Philadelphia, Potomac Chesapeake, and Plainfield.

I am proud of the Plainfield CC, a club that effectively promotes junior curling, new curler development, league curling and competitive curlers. This has been the accomplishment of many PCC Boards and a club membership that contributes greatly.

I also play duplicate Bridge, as a respectable club player but not an expert! Much like my curling.

Kathleen Belschner

Kathleen Belschner

Director

Kathleen Belschner oversees the Market Risk Indirect Compliance Coverage Area Program, Swap Dealer and Futures Commission Merchants Risk Management Program and the Global Markets Risk Breach Forum.

Kathleen joined the Bank of America team from the Merrill Lynch merger where she was the Chief Operating Officer for Market and Credit Risk. Over the past 25+ years at the Bank, Kathleen has held a number of positions across Research, Institutional Sales, Global Wealth Investment Management and Global Risk Management.

Kathleen holds an MBA from Pace University Lubin School of Business, BS from Bloomfield College, and is a United States Army veteran.

Kathleen and her husband Bruce live in Forked River, New Jersey, and are active in their community. Kathleen serves on the Board of the Pace University MBA Program and the Plainfield Curling Club. Kathleen holds Security Licenses – Series 7, 63, and 65.

Hugh Gordon

Hugh Gordon

Director

I was introduced to Curling when I brought my sons’ Boy Scout Troop to PCC for a Learn-To-Curl in January, 2014. I quickly fell in love with this sport and its people, and joined the club. Over the years I have marveled at all the dedicated volunteers that make our club run. I have tried to help out where I can. I have volunteered for Learn-To-Curls, assisted where needed at bonspiels, and pitched in for various work projects. I have also served as the Club “Haberdasher” for the past few years, supplying Club apparel and some basic curling gear in the warm room. With my sons off at college now, I have additional capacity to step up my level of volunteerism for our club, and would like to serve on the PCC Board. I bring with me over thirty years of management experience from my professional career, along with having served other non-profit entities in various capacities. I am providing a summary of my relevant experience below.
Mark Mooney

Mark Mooney

Director

After seeing a open house announcement in a community paper in Rochester, NY, I threw my first stone in 2000. Immediately, I was hooked on curling.

I’ve always been drawn to the camaraderie of the sport, and got into the bonspiel circuit early in my curling career. In my last year of eligibility of the 5-and-under competitions, I finished 2nd in both the Francis Dykes and Kayser in 2005. In fact, it was through the 5&Under bonspiels where I met a lot of my future Plainfield curling club members.

But giving back to the sport is important to me too. After a few seasons, I was elected to the Rochester Curling Club Board of Directors and served as the Rochester Curling Club President for a year. I served as the GNCC junior coordinator for 4 years, having coordinated several curling camps and running regional GNCC playdowns that led to nationals and international competitions. One of my proudest accomplishments has been to see several of the junior campers compete on the national and world stage and give back to the sport as they have grown.

In 2007, I moved to New Jersey and was immediately welcomed by the Plainfield Club. I stepped away from the organizational side of curling and focused on competitive curling. I have played on several teams, making it as far as the USCA Challenge Round when it was held after regional qualifiers. I have also represented Plainfield and the GNCC at multiple Club Nationals, finishing as high as fifth as a Vice Skip for Team Petrov. I have competed regionally in mixed playdowns, and during the 2017-2018 season, I got back into skipping my own team, finishing 3rd in the GNCC region.

I have taken all this experience to the international level. In 2019, I helped coach the Ukraine Mixed Doubles team at the World Mixed Doubles Championship in Stavanger, Norway. I followed that in January 2020 by skipping my mixed team in the Winter World Master Games as Team USA in Innsbruck, Austria in January 2020, making the playoffs at my first international competition.

Plainfield Curling Club has been my home for the past decade, and I see many challenges ahead for the club. First, we have lost several key members the past few seasons, leaving a gap that needs to be filled. Our second challenge will be with the growth of the club and influx of potential new members, and how we handle this influx.

I understand the importance of being an independent, self-sufficient club, but also realize we are part of a much bigger community. I feel I have a unique perspective with my experiences of being a former curling club board member, going through the 5&Unders, running junior camps and events, as well as competing regionally and nationally.

John Weidemann

John Weidemann

Director

John started curling in 2011 along with his wife Beverly after attending a Curling Experience. He started out in the crazy late Thursday 10:30 pm league in its inaugural year; he now curls Monday, Tuesday and Thursday nights. John is also a member of the Ice Crew and is often helping out whenever he can at bonspiels. Outside the curling club, John has 2 beautiful daughters and works as the Production Coordinator at The Theatre at Raritan Valley Community College.
Leticia Young

Leticia Young

Director

Leticia, more commonly known as Teesh, began curling in 2010, and has been a weekend league curler since then. She coordinated Plainfield’s MACA participation for four years, and was one of the co-chairs of the Hogwarts (2016) and Superham (2017) Bonsqueals. She has also helped with the Little Rockers program, and joined the board in 2018 as a new way to give back to the club community.