COVID-19 NOVEMBER UPDATE, News (Port Stanley Minor Hockey)

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COVID-19 NOVEMBER UPDATE
Submitted By Stephanie Haynes on Friday, November 20, 2020
With COVID-19 cases spiking around the province and creeping closer to our area, I felt it was appropriate to give and update from the Port Stanley Minor Hockey perspective;

The move to “Yellow” precautions does not directly impact our current programming, but it does reinforce the need to follow the protocols we have in place.

In general, I have been very impressed and pleased with our adherence to our protocols.  Parents of players with symptoms have been keeping their players (and siblings) home, getting tested and communicating the all clear before returning to the arena.  I have observed parents watching from designated locations, coaches refusing to allow water bottles to be shared and entrance screeners asking players to go back to their cars to put on more equipment.  I know some of these are easier to follow than others, but they are all required if we want to continue to play. 
 
Some reminders;
  • 1 guest per participant - If you are scrimmaging, one coach from each team can act as the referees on the ice and 1 coach and 1 trainer can be on the bench providing direction/instruction to the players. 
  • Coaches on the bench must wear a mask.  When we get to real games, only 1 coach and 1 trainer will be permitted on the bench.  If you are an assistant coach or manager watching from the stands, you are counted as a guest.
  • Fully completed forms – especially phone numbers.
  • No outside food or drink
  • Put on/take off skates and helmets (and goalie pads) only in dressing rooms.  Even if you can get fully dressed/undressed in under 10 min.  Now that the weather is getting colder, this becomes more of a challenge, but we need to stay the course.  You are not being nice when you look the other way, you are putting all of our ice use at risk.
  • Over the next couple of weeks I ask that screeners encourage players to come in, complete their forms, have their temperature confirmed, then head back to their warm cars while we wait for our ice time.  Having a whole team cram into the entrance, even masked is not a good practice. 
 
When will we start Games?

The short answer, I don’t know.  The recent spike has reduced my sense of urgency for the introduction of another association.  However, we are continuing to make plans so that we can start as soon as it is safe to do so.  If you still have jersey’s at home, please wash and bring them to your coach.  Coaches, please deposit them in the storage room for sorting.  I would love to be able to give you a timeline for when games will begin, but our reality is that what we are now doing is in jeopardy.  Many other associations around the country are having to suspend operations, some in part due to not following requirements, but many more due to not having as strict requirements in the first place. 
 
Pictures?

Bob from Shooters Photography would love to come and take pictures, however indoor mask requirements prevent him from doing so inside.  I have asked him to look at a Saturday morning 9-1200 and we will look for a day that the weather will cooperate.  He has samples of his photos online and I encourage you to have a look https://www.shootersphoto.ca/hockey-samples.html  When I get a confirmation I will post in by the check-in table, but it could be short notice, so get your haircut now! 
 
Skills?
Skills are scheduled to end the middle of December, we plan on taking a break for the holidays, then evaluating options for January.  
 
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out.  Keep safe,   
 
Alex Russell



President
Port Stanley Minor Hockey Association 
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