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Citizens With Disabilities - Ontario


Team Sets Sights On Winning

Blind Curling Club tourney today


Posing outside of the Radisson Hotel yesterday are members of the Toronto Blind Curling Team. From left, Randy Nelson, Frances Lake, Bill McKendry Sr., Ann Lafontaine, Rick Oriold, Lou Fracasso and Bill McKendry Jr. (Ernest Doroszuk, Sun Media)

Randy Nelson is blind in one eye and has limited tunnel vision in his other, but it doesn't deter him from playing sports.

The 49-year-old member of the Toronto Blind Curling Club, who suffers from Retinitis Pigmentosis, is playing in Ontario's Blind Curling Championships today along with 70 fellow participants with vision loss from Oshawa, Hamilton, Kingston, Kitchener-Waterloo and Ottawa.

"Toronto formed our teams about four years ago. We have a very young team compared to the other cities who have been around for 30 to 40 years," Nelson said. "We're trying to grow the sport and make it into an Olympic sport."

Nelson said one challenge those with vision loss have is not getting involved in physical activity or recreational activities or hobbies.

"I've had this disease since I was 12 and I've always liked sports. Being able to take part on a team and not feeling left out lets me feel accepted for who I am with my limitations and it also builds confidence," said Nelson, who works at the Canadian National Institute for the Blind training people how to use CB ham radios.

The championships are being held in Toronto for the first time. The tournament starts at 8:30 a.m. at the Tam Heather Curling and Tennis Club on Military Trail in Scarborough, near Neilson Rd. and Hwy. 401.

For information, call 416-627-6010 or e-mail

Taken from

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