Port Coquitlam sports fields to open this week amid restrictions

User groups will have to book time online, and have a COVID-19 safety plan for players, coaches, officials

Sports fields in Port Coquitlam will be reopening on Monday.

But it won’t be open season to any team or group that just wants to play.

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The fields, which have been closed to organized activity since March 19, must be booked in advance and the sports organization has to have a sport-specific COVID-19 safety plan in place. 

The plan details the precautions — like frequent hand washing, limiting the sharing of equipment and physical distancing measures — the group has put in place to mitigate the risk of participants being exposed or infected by the novel coronavirus. It must also be approved by the organization’s board of directors or its provincial sports association.

Organizations booking a field must also remind participants, coaches, officials and spectators of the guidelines, as well as ensure no one with symptoms of illness be involved in the activity.

“We know it’s been a tough few months, especially for kids,” said Coun. Steve Darling, who’s also the city’s designate for sports and recreation. “We are excited to be able to get some of our sports groups back out playing and returning to sport.”

But while soccer balls may be flying again, and baseballs caroming off bats, it will be awhile yet before competitive games can take place. Provincial health restrictions still in place limit sporting activity to focusing on drills and skill building to limit physical contact and maintain distancing.

Fields can be reserved online at www.portcoquitlam.ca/sportsfields.

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