Fun in Recovery

Here’s a new one: Learn to Curl

Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation
3 min readDec 29, 2023

By Jeremiah Gardner

NOTE: This was published for the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation’s monthly Recovery Advocacy Update. If you’d like to receive our advocacy emails, subscribe today.

Photo by Matthew Fassnacht on Unsplash

For many people like me who are in recovery from substance use disorders, sobriety is just part of the story — the beginning or foundation. What becomes possible when alcohol and other drugs are out of the picture — that’s the more meaningful characteristic of recovery, which is why we sometimes call it a path of discovery. In recovery, we get to discover big things like new and improved relationships, purpose, alignment with values, spirituality and health. We also get to discover new interests and explore fun, new experiences — often with other people who are in recovery. And that’s exactly what many of us in Minnesota will be doing in February when we learn the game of curling — the latest in a growing menu of options promoting fun in recovery in communities everywhere.

Register here: Curling — Amethyst Recovery Solutions.

What is curling? It’s a game played on ice, especially in Scotland and Canada, in which large round flat stones are slid across the surface toward a mark. Members of a team use brooms to sweep the surface of the ice in the path of the stone to control its speed and direction.

Who thought to combine curling with recovery? Derek Johnson from Amethyst Recovery Solutions in St. Paul. He’s a curler and also a person in recovery who says he needed more people to curl with.

The Sober Scene is growing. Want to play in a recovery hockey league or recovery basketball league? How about recovery community pickeball? Enjoy a sauna with other sober folks? Visit the Greek Isles and Turkey during a Recovery Conference at Sea? Climbing? Sailing? Soccer? Softball? Increasingly, there is all kinds of fun for everyone in recovery — not just in Minnesota (as these examples demonstrate) but throughout the country and world.

Tell us what’s happening in your recovery community …

See Travel Sober.
See Sauna and Sobriety on Instagram
Almost 1.800 Minnesota Wild recovery fans converged at the Xcel Center in St. Paul for Minnesota Wild Recovery Night on Jan. 2. Hazelden Betty Ford co-sponsored the event, which featured a pre-game recovery talk by former NHLer Paul Martin and benefitted Recovery Community Hockey.
See Recovery Community Pickleball on Facebook.



Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation

As a force of healing & hope for those affected by addiction, we feature insights and views from leading voices on prevention, treatment & recovery.