Return to Play Update – August 28, 2020

Thank you for your patience as we make plans to return to hockey in the fall of 2020.  Our Association is in the process of completing its return-to-play plan.  At this point, we are awaiting revisions to the guidelines provided by Hockey Newfoundland (HNL).  We were issued a set of return-to-play guidelines earlier in August, developed a plan for HNL and submitted it on August 21, only to have new arena guidelines issued by the Chief Medical Officer of Health on August 24.  HNL is currently revising their guidelines to bring them more in line with the new regulations.  We expect that the plan that we submit will always be a “work in progress” as new restrictions may be introduced, or existing restrictions are relaxed.  Until this plan is completed, we can’t do registration, set fees, etc.   

Here is what we know so far:

-          The earliest we will start back on the ice is September 28.  This will likely involve groups U11, U13, U15 initially with other groups phased in.

-          One parent per player will be permitted into the arena to spectate – they will likely have to sign in and complete a COVID protocol form (along with the players).

-          Players and parents and coaches will have to wear masks while in the facility (until they go on the ice).

-          Group size on the ice will likely be a total of 30 people, including players and coaches

-          We will return to game earlier than anticipated – this means that U18 (formerly Midget) and U15 (formerly Bantam) will be able to start as usual and the previously rumored, six months of “skills and drills” won’t be the case.

-          It’s unlikely that we will have provincials this year, but there will probably be regional competition (similar to baseball)

-          The status of the AAA, DJHL and association tryouts is not known at this stage.  The DJHL will be completing their own plan. 

-          Dressing rooms will likely be open, but capacity will be limited.  We will encourage players to dress at home and put on their skates when they arrive.  Parents will not be permitted in the dressing rooms.  Goalies will be given a little more space. 

-          There will 30 minutes between each group on the ice to allow for adequate facility cleaning – this means that ice time will be a little scarce throughout the season. 

So what should you do now?

-          Sit tight, get the kids back to school and into a somewhat normal routine.

-          Monitor the MPMHA website and Facebook page for updates.  Things may happen very quickly in the month of September – e.g., registration, orientation, group assignment, first practices

[2020-08-28 15:13:46]