The Calgary Ladies Field Hockey Association (CLFHA) are celebrating their 50th Anniversary! Over 100 past and present members of the CLFHA came together at Friday’s Gala to commemorate the milestone and recognize the league’s founders.
“For an association to last as long as we have means that there are good people involved, a strong volunteer base and a love of the sport,” says CLFHA President Lisa Walpole.
“For me, celebrating the 50th Anniversary is a huge deal,” says Debi Seaman, CLFHA Promotions Committee Chair. “Our league has come such a long way in the past 50 years – and it continues to grow. It takes a dedicated group of people to keep our league going, and it took an even more dedicated group of ladies to start it up in the first place.”
That group of ladies started the CLFHA in 1962 with four teams. Today there are over 20 teams competing year round, with three divisions during both the indoor and outdoor seasons. CLFHA is also continuing to develop their junior program. Originally, the CLFHA competing at Stanley Park on a pitch rented from the city. You can now find the CLFHA competing on several turf fields in Calgary, including Hawkings Field and MacMahon Stadium – and occasionally on grass at Optimist Athletic Park.
It was on one of these fields Helen Cusworth first discovered field hockey in Calgary years ago. She soon became involved in the CLFHA as an athlete – then went on to coach and umpire in the league. Helen, who will turn ninety this summer, shared her story on Friday – a highlight for many at the Gala.
“Another highlight of the night was getting to see all the players from over the years!” says Seaman. “There were many people at the event who have not seen each other in a number of years – reconnecting was fantastic.”