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CURLING COVID-19 Response FAQ

Drafted Sept. 14, 2021 *Subject to change

Guiding Philosophy:

The Prince Albert Golf & Curling Centre (PAGCC) is committed to the positive well-being of all members of our community. The PAGCC will be aligning its COVID-19 Response Plan with updated Saskatchewan Health Authority (SHA) Guidelines and recommendations from our sport organizations, Curling Canada and CurlSask. We agree that “it is entirely possible for people to continue to curl in a manner that is physical distant and low-risk, while still enjoying the positive social and physical benefits of the sport.

Will there be any rule changes for the sport of curling because of COVID-19 safety concerns?

Try following Curling Canada’s recommendations, the “Single-Sweeper Rule” :

● The “Single-Sweeper Rule” means that: o Only one (1) sweeper maximum is permitted at all times o No “relaying” (no sweeper taking over for another sweeper at any time) o No sweeping an opponent’s stone after it passes the T-Line o No one, except the dedicated sweeper for a shot, can sweep any stone (including ticks, bumps, and raises)

Will there be any other changes to the on-ice experience this season?

Try following Curling Canada’s recommendations. Some of these on-ice changes should include:

● No coin-flips (consider “rock-paper-scissor” or a coin flip app instead) ● No handshakes (consider a “raise-of-the-broom” instead) ● No touching other curler’s stones with your hand (use your broom or foot instead) ● No “bare-hand” cleaning of the bottom of your stone (use your glove or broom instead) ● No benches ● No group congregating on the backboards (this will also speed up play) ● Standing locations: all players should obey physical distancing recommendations during play, which means: o Stand between hoglines on the dedicated physical distancing circles o Only the “delivering team” is permitted access to the house during their turn (the opposing skip should stand behind the hack and await their turn to reclaim access to the house)

There will likely be other changes to your on-ice experience as well (eg. The method of scorekeeping and measuring, the manner of entering the ice area, loaner equipment availability, doubles board handling, etc

Is the PAGCC permitted to use all 8 sheets of ice at the same time during the 2021/22 curling season?

Yes, according to SHS Guidelines, a facility like the PAGCC is permitted to use all 8 sheets of ice at the same time to normal capacity because curling is considered a Non-contact activity that can be enjoyed so long as physical distancing is maintained.

Will playing at the PAGCC mean that I belong to an “PAGCC cohort”?

No. Although SHS recommends that one be mindful of the scope of their associations, since curling is a non-contact activity that can be enjoyed while maintaining physical distancing it need not be considered as a part of a circumscribed cohort. This is unlike a contact sport such as basketball or hockey that requires close contact as a necessary feature of its activity. This means that one can curl at other curling facilities as well (just as one can shop at multiple Costco’s), provided that those curling facilities likewise maintain physical distancing guidelines (eg. The “Single-Sweeper Rule”). This does mean however that you may not be able to play curling and another sport that involves close contact. It may be helpful to recognize here that the “Single-Sweeper Rule” is what enables the sport of curling to maintain physical distancing requirements, and thus allows curling to be a low-risk activity that can be enjoyed under public health restrictions.

Will all PAGCC leagues be playing during the 2021/22 season?

Yes, all leagues will be operating at normal capacity during the 2021/22 season.

What is the PAGCC’s protocol should a COVID-19 case emerge at the PAGCC?

We are currently developing a COVID-19 Response Plan that will include an Incident Report Form for any known or reported cases. Following SHA Guidelines, any COVID-19 related incidents at the PAGCC will be reported immediately to SHA for next-step guidance, including guidance on reporting to our curlers and our cleaning protocols.

Will Waivers and Declarations of Compliance be required?

Yes. Users of the PAGCC’s facility will be expected to complete Waivers and Declarations of Compliance. The Declaration of Compliance will declare that one will not knowingly enter the facility if they are experiencing any COVID-19 related symptoms. Further information on Waivers and Declarations of Compliance forms will be forthcoming.

Will masks be required?

The PAGCC’s policy regarding the use of masks: At this point in time, masks are required in the following situations:

● Entering the building ● Waiting in the main lobby for their draw time ● Heading out onto the sheet of ice to curl

Will locker rooms be open?

The locker rooms will be made available with proper sanitization protocols in place.
The PAGCC strongly encourage curlers to arrive for curling in their curling gear.

Will loaner equipment (eg. brooms, sliders) still be available?

Loaner equipment will be made available with proper sanitizing protocols in place to ensure a low-risk, responsible use. There is a possibility that brooms and sliders could be “signed-out” for the entire season with a refundable deposit of an undetermined amount given to the club. We encourage curlers to purchase their own equipment and/or put their names or clear identifiers on their equipment.

Will the lounge be open? If so, under what conditions?

Yes, the PAGCC’s lounge will be open for service during similar operating hours as in recent seasons. The conditions under which the lounge will be open remains to be determined, but those conditions will be aligned with SHA Guidelines. It is likely that the table and seating arrangements will be re-arranged, but our priority will be to ensure a low-risk setting so that our curlers can still enjoy some of the important “social virtues” of curling.

Will the water fountains be available?

The use of the water fountains will not be permitted. Curlers will be encouraged to bring their own water bottle with water in it to the PAGCC.

Will there be 50/50 draws or prize draws throughout the 2021/22 season?

they will be operated.

What about PAGCC bonspiels?

We hope to be able to run events such as our bonspiels. As curling is a non-contact sport, we could run these at full capacity with staggered start times. As above, we cannot confirm if spectators will be allowed to attend these events. Further details will be provided as they become available.

What about fun spiels that are not run by the PAGCC?

Groups will be expected to adhere to the PAGCC’s policies and procedures. They will be responsible for their own group’s well-being.

Will sanitizer and disinfecting wipes be made available at the PAGCC?

Yes, sanitizer, disinfecting wipes, and possibly disinfecting spray will be made available throughout the PAGCC facility, including entrance/exit, and high-touch point areas such as on the ice for cleaning rocks. Masks will be available for purchase at the office.

Will there be proper signage and directional traffic within the facility?

Yes, there will be proper signage and directional traffic within the facility. We will use signage provided by SHS and create our own to be specific to curling. You can expect to see signage and floor marking at entrances/exits, lobby and lounge, locker rooms and washrooms, and on the ice. You can trust that your experience at the PAGCC will be structured accordingly.

Please keep in mind that there will be changes regarding the atmosphere of the pandemic which will ultimately cause changes to our policies and procedures. The PAGCC’s Board of Directors will approve a Policy and Protocols Document that is subject to change before or during the 2021/22 season.

We thank all of our curlers for their survey responses. They have helped us to create this FAQ document for you. We hope this information gives you a better and clearer understanding of the upcoming season.

Our registration starts on September 15th at 8am at: www.prince-albert-golf.curling.io/en