COVID-19 has seemingly interrupted or cancelled every organized activity for youngsters.
The Tara Twins Minor Softball program did have their season delayed, but now, through consultation with the Grey Bruce Health Unit they've established guidelines and protocols for a " return-to-play ".
Fred Wallace spoke to Ryan Grieg of the Twins organization about the process of returning and the measures that will be implemented.
Tara Twins Return to Play Procedures and Best Practices
All persons entering the park must agree to be screened, if not no admission (this screening may require a certified individual with private assurance protection).
Declaration waiver from all participants re COVID-19 exposure must be validated with each age roster.
Signage must be well displayed in the entry area with regards to the spreading of the virus, proper hygiene, information on physical distancing and what to do if you have any symptoms.
The establishment of hand sanitization stations may be applicable for some complexes / facilities, but at minimum must be on the bench and equipment area of every team for all training, practices, games
Team snacks, picnics, shared lunches, BBQ’s are not allowed.
Each player must have their own helmet and or facemask which should be cleaned after each use
Players should be reminded to not share equipment and keep each individuals equipment isolated – 6 foot distance and reduce coming into contact with the equipment of other players.
No batting gloves. Hand washing / sanitizing is more efficient
Catcher’s equipment; each catcher must have their own and should be disinfected after each game.
Sharing of water bottles not allowed
Label all water bottles and personal equipment so there is no confusion
Make it a priority to provide your team with essentials to stay healthy – Hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes, disinfecting spray, etc. Also, make it mandatory for players to disinfect everything that was used during participation
AT ALL TIMES disinfect and sterilize your own personal equipment
Face masks for the purpose of reducing potential virus transmission will be a required stipulation for entering the park/complex/facility. Catcher, umpire, batter and any offensive player who reaches base safely must wear a face mask- bandana, or buff will suffice.
General spitting will be discouraged for all participants, both on and off the field. Difficult to enforce. Sunflower seeds / chewing tobacco or gum will be handled with a zero tolerance policy, that will become enforceable through ejection from the game and / or removal from events.
All spectators should self assess prior leaving home to attend any practices or games. If they have any symptoms they should stay home. All spectators entering the park must answer the COVID-19 screening questions. If any of the questions are failed entry into the park will be denied.
Spectators will not be allowed to watch the practice or game from inside the infield baselines. It will be required that any spectators (if allowed) will need to bring their own chairs or blankets and sit down the foul line or outside of the outfield fence. Seating areas including bleachers and picnic areas will be considered off limits to prevent congregation of groups of spectators. Players who are not required to be present for a game should be considered spectators and will be required to follow spectator guidelines. (i.e. injured players attending to support their team). All spectators must adhere to the 6 foot physical distancing requirement for anyone outside of their immediate family that they are residing with.
Established hand sanitization guidelines will need to be followed by all spectators. Personal supply of hand sanitizer is required.
No sunflower seeds, gum chewing or spitting
As is consistent with guidelines for participants, spectators will not be allowed any seeds, gum, or chewing tobacco and will be asked to remove it from the area.
Players will be divided into two (2) groups of four (4) per diamond, per time slot.
Each group will have one coach/instructor.
The groups will rotate through skill stations around the diamond. Batting, infield, outfield and pitching/catching/miscellaneous
Maximum of 24 participants plus 2 coaches per time slot. 8 per diamond, Tara A, Tara B and Allenford.
If numbers per group exceed 24, two (2) time slots per night per diamond as necessary.
Scheduling as follows, 24 and under participants
U8-Mondays, 630-8, Tara A, Tara B and Allenford
U10-Tuesdays, 630-8, Tara A, Tara B and Allenford
U12-Wednesdays, 630-8, Tara A, Tara B and Allenford
U14-Thursdays, 630-8, Tara A, Tara B and Allenford
T-Ball, Saturday mornings 10 AM, Tara A and Tara B
If we exceed 24 participants, we will use 2 time slots, 6-715 and 715-830, on all three (3) diamonds.
If we exceed 48 participants, we will investigate moving to Chesley and/or Keady as well.
Cost per player will be $20 and they will receive a Tara Twins Hat and T-shirt to keep.