(Patrick Davies photo - Black Press Media)

City of Williams Lake strengthens face mask policy at Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex

The City of Williams Lake has clarified its mandatory mask policy for visitors attending the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex arenas Friday through Sunday.

The procedure change, originally issued Oct. 13 and applying only when visiting teams were on the arena ice schedule, was implemented as a COVID-19 precaution to ensure the safety of all visitors, players and staff, as the hockey season is ramping out and more games are on the schedule, including out-of-town teams travelling to Williams Lake for games, the City said in a release.

A revised policy was sent out on Oct. 15 making it mandatory all visitors, players, coaches and volunteers entering the arena from Friday through Sunday will be required to wear a mask correctly at all times.

During scheduled practices or games, all players, coaches and staff actively participating in the sport or event are allowed to remove their mask for the duration of their sport or event.

Concerns surrounding three scheduled exhibition games in Williams Lake this weekend involving the Prince George-based Northern Capitals and the Fraser Valley Rush of the BC Female Major Midget AAA League have prompted questions surrounding community safety after the Hollyburn Country Club in West Vancouver was shut down indefinitely due to a COVID-19 exposure at its facility.

Keegan Goodrich, vice president of communications and events with BC Hockey, said all viaSport BC safety guidelines are being followed, as both the Northern Capitals and Fraser Valley Rush are within the same four-team cohort.

READ MORE: City makes face masks mandatory at Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex

“Facilities work within the WorkSafe guidelines and their local health authority to administer protocols for the safety of all their user groups,” Goodrich said. “Because facilities vary across the province, a specific plan is set forth by each facility. All BC Hockey members and user groups would follow the protocols outlined by each facility.”

The Northern Capitals, meanwhile, are considered a zone team, which includes Williams Lake in their draw zone.

“The zone teams try to schedule games across their region so players can play in their hometown,” Goodrich said.

Currently, four Williams Lake girls play for the Northern Capitals.

Ian James, the City of Williams Lake’s director of community services, said concerns about the visiting teams were taken seriously and into consideration.

“We want to protect our community as best as we can,” James said. “But during these times of COVID we also have a global responsibility to work together as communities. We didn’t take the decision lightly to allow these groups to come in.”

At the time the game was scheduled, three of five arena facilities in Prince George were closed due to financial restrictions.

“There are a lot of youth who are devastated and not allowed to participate in sporting activities, including learn to skate programs and other things like that, and I think it’s still important to be able to help out our neighbours if we can,” James said.

James also stressed all viaSport guidelines will be adhered to by both visiting teams.

“I don’t disagree with any of the concerns but we did take all of the safety factors into account and we feel we are being consistent with viaSport guidelines,” he said. “We want to be a good neighbour.”


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Yunesit'in Government in partnership with the BC Wildfire Service will be conducting a prescribed burn seven kilometres west of the community and 25 kilometres south of Alexis Creek on the south side of the Chilcotin River. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Prescribed burning planned to reduce wildfire risk near Yunesit’in

Burning may begin as early as April 13 in partnership with BC Wildfire Service

An aerial view of the Williams Lake Stockyards taken during a flyover in 2020. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Williams Lake Bull Show and Sale in its 84th year

This year’s sale will be online and in person

B.C. Cattlemen’s Association general manager Kevin Boon. (B.C. Cattlemen’s Association photo)
COVID, BSE, water access and private land rights: B.C. Cattlemen’s general manager weighs in

Kevin Boon said positive aspect of pandemic is more people interested in where their food comes from

Cariboo Chilcotin Conservation Society communications officer Brianna van de Wijngaard reflects on World Water Day March 22. (Photo submitted)
DOWN TO EARTH: World Water Day means something different for everyone

This year’s World Water Day theme was Valuing Water

Williams Lake Cycling Club president Shawn Lewis (from left), Jeremy Stoward of New Path Forestry, WLCC Boitanio Bike Park director Andrew Hutchinson accept a cheque from Williams Lake and District Credit Union investment specialist Abigail King. (Photo submitted)
Williams Lake Cycling Club gets bike park donation to bolster upgrades, maintenance

Plans are to complete three rideable lines each year, he added

Burnaby MLA Raj Chouhan presides as Speaker of the B.C. legislature, which opened it spring session April 12 with a speech from the throne. THE CANADIAN PRESS
B.C. NDP promises more health care spending, business support in 2021 budget

John Horgan government to ‘carefully return to balanced budgets’

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A lady wears a sticker given out after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count slows after last week’s peak

3,219 new cases since Friday, 18 additional deaths

North Cowichan councillor Tek Manhas did not violate the municipality’s code of conduct by posting a sexist meme on Facebook, council concludes. (File photo)
B.C. municipality to take no action against councillor who posted sexist meme

Tek Manhas’s meme doesn’t violate North Cowichan council’s code of conduct, municipality concludes

—Image: contributed
Indoor wine tastings still allowed in B.C., not considered a ‘social gathering’

“Tasting is really just part of the retail experience. The analogy I use is you wouldn’t buy a pair of pants without trying them on.”

A sign on a shop window indicates the store is closed in Ottawa, Monday March 23, 2020. The Canadian Federation of Independent Business is raising its estimate for the number of businesses that are considering the possibility of closing permanently. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Small business struggling amid COVID-19 pandemic looks for aid in Liberals’ budget

President Dan Kelly said it is crucial to maintain programs to help businesses to the other side of the pandemic

The National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians says that includes attempts to steal Canadian research on COVID-19 and vaccines, and sow misinformation. (AP Photo/Esteban Felix)
Intelligence committee warns China, Russia targeting Canadian COVID-19 research

Committee also found that the terrorist threat to Canada has shifted since its last such assessment

Part of the massive mess left behind in a Spallumcheen rental home owned by Wes Burden, whose tenants bolted from the property in the middle of the night. Burden is now facing a hefty cleaning and repair bill as a result. (Photo submitted)
Tenants disappear in the night leaving Okanagan home trashed with junk, feces

Spallumcheen rental rooms filled with junk, human and animal feces; landlord scared to rent again

Parliament Hill is viewed below a Canada flag in Gatineau, Quebec, Friday, Sept. 18, 2020. A new poll suggests most Canadians are feeling more grateful for what they have in 2020 as a result of COVID-19 pandemic.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions increased slightly in 2019: report

2019 report shows Canada emitted about one million tonnes more of these gases than the previous year

Most Read