Fan limits in place for many fall contests
Answers are finally starting to appear when it comes to questions from followers of local high school sports who want to see the action in person this fall.
Guidelines and policies are going to be subject to change this fall for everyone. But, as the fall season kicks into high gear this week and next, current strategies to keep the contests going and keep everyone safe by limiting potential exposures to COVID- 19 have been announced by Medford, Rib Lake and Gilman and their respective conferences.
The Great Northern Conference on Monday released an informational spreadsheet on its website, greatnorthernconference. org, outlining each school’s policies and guidelines for each fall sport. If fans are considering travel to events outside of Medford, they should check out the spreadsheet before they leave to make sure they can even attend that event.
In Medford, facial coverings are being required for all indoor events and outdoor bleacher seating. When admission is charged, the cost is $4, but students and senior citizens get in free. Concessions will be available but social distancing is required while waiting in line. All varsity football, volleyball, swim and soccer events will be live streamed at onfocus.news.
_ For football and boys soccer at Raider Field, there is no limit for fan capacity. Athletes must wear facial coverings only during the pre-game officials meeting. Coaches must wear them during close contact.
_ For volleyball, fan capacity in Raider Hall is limited to four tickets per athlete. All individuals must be masked at all times.
_ For girls swimming, no fans are allowed at the MASH pool. Facial coverings are required for all except for swimmers in the pool.
_ For girls tennis, there is no limit on fans and no facial covering requirements for athletes and coaches.
_ For cross country meets, which Medford hosts Sept. 17 and Oct. 1, there is no limit on fans and masks must be worn by runners in the staging area.
Rib Lake athletic director Mike Wudi Protocols for fall announced by local schools
released a letter Sunday on the school district’s Facebook page outlining the school’s plans for the fall.
Current Marawood Conference passes will be the only passes accepted for admission to games. Other season passes or lifetime passes that may have been issued in previous years will not be accepted. Admission fees have been waived. Fans are encouraged to watch the district’s Facebook page regarding live streaming of events.
_ For Rib Lake-Prentice’s Lakeland Conference football home games, spectators will be limited to four tickets per participant. There will be no other general admissions. Spectators are not required to wear face coverings while attending a football game, but are strongly encouraged to use them, particularly when they cannot properly social distance from other non-family members. Spectators are encouraged to sit with their immediate family members in the bleachers and maintain 6 feet of spacing from non-family members.
_ For Rib Lake’s home volleyball matches in the Marawood Conference, spectators will be limited to 45 individuals for both the home and visiting teams. Each team will distribute their 45 tickets prior to each game. There will be no general admissions on game day. In accordance with state mandates, face coverings are required while indoors. Spectators are encouraged to sit with their immediate family members in the bleachers and maintain 6 feet of spacing from non-family members.
_ For cross country, spectators are encouraged to be immediate family members only. Face coverings are not required, but they are strongly encouraged when unable to maintain a proper social distance from non-family members. Spectators are asked to not crowd the start and finish areas and spread out along the course to enjoy the competition.
The Gilman School District announced its guidelines early this week for football and volleyball. Tickets will be provided to student-athletes to distribute to family members in the days leading up to the event and will not be sold at the gate for general spectator attendance. There will be no charge for events held in Gilman.
Spectators are expected to write their name, address, phone number and home county on their ticket prior to arrival. By accepting a ticket, spectators are expected to practice health and safety measures to promote the well-being of all individuals in attendance. Spectators that do not comply with health and safety measures may be asked to leave.
_ For Gilman’s home football games in the Central Wisconsin West eight-player conference, student-athletes and paid coaches will be provided four tickets apiece. This applies to both teams. Face masks are encourages for all spectators, especially in locations where social distancing cannot be practiced. Spectators living in the same household may sit or stand together during the game.
_ For Gilman’s home volleyball matches in Eastern Cloverbelt Conference play, social distancing rules will limit capacity to 100 spectators. Due to this limit, student-athletes and paid coaches will be allowed two tickets to distribute to family members. Spectators in attendance will be expected to wear a face covering while a state or local order is in effect. Spectators living in the same household may sit or stand together during the match.
For middle school volleyball matches, which will be played in the elementary gym, those players and paid coaches also will get two tickets apiece. Seventh grade matches will take place first. When that match is done, the gym will be cleared of spectators, then family members with tickets for the eighth grade match will be allowed to enter.
Gilman is recommending fans confirm with your team’s coach or athletic director what the protocols are at schools hosting away games before traveling. Most schools will be offering a livestream option for varsity events and possibly lower- level events as well. Streaming details will be shared by the host school prior to the event.
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