America's Top Curlers Descend on Philly

The 2012 USA Curling National Championships begin Saturday in Aston

Get your brooms, stones and special footwear ready.

No, there isn't a Harry Potter convention in town. But the 2012 USA Curling National Championships are in Aston, Pa. starting Saturday at 2:30.

The Iceworks Skating Complex in Delaware County has been converted to curling sheets, as 21 teams will compete over the next eight days for a chance to go to the Curling World Championships in March (the men in Switzerland and the women in Canada). This is the first time that the Nationals have been hosted in the Philadelphia area and first time since 2007 that the event is being hosted on the East Coast.

The 10 women’s and 11 men’s teams will compete in a round robin format with the Top 4 teams advancing to the playoffs. The teams will do the Rocky run up the Philadelphia Museum of Art's steps Friday night. Then there will be a tour of the city and a reception before Saturday's start of competition.

More than a dozen past Olympians are expected to compete. Tickets for the entire event and single days are available online and start at just 8 bucks per session. Webstreaming throughout the event will be available online and folks can also follow along on Twitter @2012CurlingNats.

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