DAN CEARNS, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, for The Standard
SCUGOG: The Township of Scugog is moving forward with offering ice services at the Scugog Community Recreation Centre (SCRC). A Scugog press release, posted on Monday August 31st, stated staff will begin putting in the ice at the facility on September 8th, “with the first skate and building re-opening anticipated for September 15th.” “In addition to camps, other recreation areas and uses such as heat emergency cooling stations and blood donor clinics have been permitted at SCRC since Durham Region entered into Stage 3. Scugog is taking the next step to open the facility further to include ice use, program spaces and recreation programs,” the press release read. SCRC fall recreation programs are then expected to begin on September 21st. A number of occupancy restrictions will be in place, such as limiting the maximum number of patrons to 50 people at any one time per pad area and restricting dressing rooms to eight to ten people. Some rules for participants include that they “must arrive fully dressed, with the exception of skates, gloves and helmet”, keeping access to the facility to one entrance and one exit, having parents and participants line up outside the entrance while keeping the required social distancing space, having entrance doors remain locked “until 15 minutes prior to rental or program”, and parents and participants will each have to answer a couple screening questions. “Visitors must wear a mask when inside the facility until they enter the ice surface. Coaches must wear a mask on the players’ benches,” the press release added. So far, the township is keeping showers, the Mini stick area and the concession booth closed. People will not be allowed to use the water fountain or to do any off ice warm-up activities inside the building. All user groups will be required to submit a return-to-play-plan to township staff. “The Township of Scugog continues to monitor the COVID-19 pandemic, and all related developments. We know that residents are eager to access all the amenities and start using our recreation facilities. We anticipate openings will continue through to the end of September. Specific information regarding each facility reopening and what you can expect will be released in the coming weeks,” read the Scugog release. Meanwhile, on the topic of ice sports, the Port Perry MoJacks and Uxbridge Bruins season could begin in early December. On Tuesday, August 25th, the Provincial Junior Hockey League (PJHL) announced they’ve set a target date of December 1st for their hockey action to resume. The return is expected to include a regular season of at least 24 games for each team. “Collectively, our members have worked diligently to be prepared for a safe return to competition when possible,” Sandra Heubauer, the PJHL Chair, said in a statement. “By setting a targeted start date, we are supporting our players, teams, and communities to effectively plan to resume the game.” Though the return date could change depending on future public health advice and government legislation.