The Williams Lake Curling Club is leaving no stone unturned as it prepares to return to play next week under COVID-19 restrictions.
WLCC co-ordinator and manager Ken Hall said a plan has been prepared and approved, with practice times available next week, followed by league curling the week after Thanksgiving.
The plan is current to Phase 3 of CurlBC’s guidelines, Hall said.
“We’re going ahead with all our leagues,” Hall said. “The only thing we’re not allowed to do right now under Phase 3 rules is our Saturday drop-in curling but, other than that, we’ve got our COVID-19 plans in place for the lounge and rules upstairs, and going to have to socially distance at the lobby when people are coming in.”
Maintaining physical distancing throughout the complex will be enforced, Hall added.
“The curling rules, rather than kind of the bubble rules for other team sports, are to maintain that social distancing and we’re going to stagger starts a little bit by 10 minutes or so, so people aren’t all arriving at once.”
There will also be a mandatory mask rule in effect for anyone downstairs at the club.
On the ice, extra markers will be placed to keep curlers distanced during play.
“We’ll have regular four-member teams out there,” he said. “But there will only be one sweeper at a time, so at any given time there will be one person of the four on the team that won’t have any duties that particular shot. There will only be one sweeper, so curlers will rotate through that way.”
Bonspiels, meanwhile, like the joint men’s and ladies’ bonspiel and the mixed bonspiel, are not allowed under current COVID-19 restrictions.
Registration is still ongoing for the club’s various, daily leagues, which include:
• Tuesday Night Sponsor League (begins Tuesday, Oct. 13 at 7 p.m.)
• Wednesday Night Ladies League Fall Sessions (begins Wednesday, Oct. 14 at 7 p.m.)
• Thursday Night Men’s League (begins Thursday, Oct. 15 at 7 p.m.)
• Friday Night Open Mixed League (begins Friday, Oct. 16 at 7 p.m.)
• Open Stick Curling (starts Thursday, Oct. 15)
• Monday Night Open Social League (begins Monday, Oct. 19 at 7 p.m. due to Thanksgiving holiday)
• Lil’ Rockets Fall Session (ages 7-9, Saturdays 9 to 10:15 a.m. – begins Oct. 17)
• Kidz Rockin Fall Session (ages 10-12, Saturdays 10:30 to noon – begins Oct. 17)
• Tweens and Teens Fall Session (students grades 7 to 12, Tuesdays 3:45 to 5:15 p.m., begins Oct. 17)
• Wednesday Night Ladies League Winter Session (begins Wednesday, Jan. 6 at 7 p.m.)
• Kidz Rockin Winter Session (begins on Jan. 9, ages 10-12)
• Lil’ Rockets Winter Session (begins on Jan. 11, ages 7-9)
• Tweens and Teens Winter Session (begins Jan. 12, grades 7-12)
Online registration is available at www.williamslakecurling.com.
“We’re not sure what registration will be yet but we’re budgeting for a loss this year, unfortunately,” Hall said. “But before we see registration numbers it’s hard to tell. We’re going to have people who don’t want to curl because of COVID-19, people who can’t because of financial reasons, but on the positive side the snowbirds are all here and a lot of them are curlers.”
Hall added everyone is optimistic the season will be another great one for the WLCC.
“Overall, we’re feeling pretty confident we can have an almost normal season,” he said.
“Even if it gets worse and rolled back we can still curl under Phase 2 under the plan.”