Duluth welcomes home gold medal curling team

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DULUTH, Minn. (KARE) Many asked if Duluth would plan a parade. But in curling country, for the region's gold medal-winning sons, a Bridge of Brooms was more appropriate.

It was probably more emotional, too, with so many local admirers and future curlers honored to take part.

"Just to see the smiles on their faces when they won," said young Maya Lisi of Duluth, "I was just overwhelmed."

In the program at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center, the athletes credited the other Minnesota Olympians who won gold with inspiring them.

“I can't tell you how much it fired every single one of us on Team USA up,” said John Shuster.

After plenty of patriotic cheer – and cheers – each and every person who wanted to got to meet their new heroes.

And thank them. "You guys, we're so proud of you, we're so happy," said one woman going through the autograph line.

"They said their medal wasn't just theirs," said Clare Schapman from Duluth. "It was everyone's.

The curlers say the most important thing they can do is grow the sport. And if the kids present in Duluth on Tuesday are any indication, Team Shuster deserves a gold for that effort as well.

"I like all the curlers," said one young boy. "They inspired me to do curling. And someday I might want to be in the Olympics too."

With all the new enthusiasm for the sport, curling clubs around the state say they're getting more calls than ever before.