In a news release issued today, the City of Sault Ste. Marie confirmed that city-run outdoor rinks and trails will remain open to the public during the provincial lockdown.
A number of COVID-19 health and safety protocols are in place, however, and use of these outdoor recreational facilities may change as the province updates its lockdown status.
Full text of the city's news release follows:
Under the provincial government shutdown, outdoor recreational facilities will remain open as a method of physical activity. This includes city operated rinks, skating oval, toboggan hills and trails.
Users must adhere to the following:
- Outdoor sports or recreational classes of any kind are not permitted at recreational facilities. This includes the City of Sault Ste. Marie operated outdoor skating rinks and ice pads – Anna McCrea, Merrifield and Esposito rinks, Art Jennings Speed Skating Oval and the Clergue Park Skating Trail.
- In order to comply with provincial orders during this lockdown phase, hockey games, scrimmages, shinny and pick up hockey are prohibited. Hockey sticks, pucks and nets should not be on the ice at any time. Due to provincial legislation otherwise previously designated ‘hockey rinks’ (Anna McCrea, Merrifield and Esposito rinks) shall be used for skating only.
- Skating will continue at all outdoor skating facilities in alignment with provincial guidelines as follows:
- Users of any outdoor city site must plan your visit accordingly,
- No groups larger than five people are permitted and;
- Those outside of your household must maintain a physical distance of at least two metres.
- Masking is recommended at all times, even outdoors.
It is important for the city to continue to provide the community with safe ways to stay active as the pandemic continues however, the opening of outdoor recreational sites are subject to change as provincial orders change.
On-site security will be enforcing provincial regulations and limiting how many people can use the facilities at a time. All outdoor facilities will close at 8 p.m. Residents are reminded to take extra caution and abide by signage, protocols and direction provided by on-site security or staff. If compliance with required conditions cannot be met, it may lead to a sudden closure of outdoor recreational sites.
The City of Sault Ste. Marie works closely with Algoma Public Health and community stakeholders to monitor the COVID-19 situation and respond accordingly. For the most current information, updates will be posted to the city’s website and on social media.