GALION — Galion City Schools officials have outlined guidelines for spring sports athletes and spectators.
Athletic Director Kyle Baughn provided guidance for students and families during a Facebook Live session this week following Gov. Mike DeWine’s announcement on Feb. 25 that restrictions on capacity limits will be eased for sports and entertainment venues across Ohio.
DeWine said sporting and entertainment events will be able to reopen with 25% maximum indoor capacity and 30% maximum outdoor capacity provided they follow established precautions such as mandatory mask wearing for employees and customers, spectator pathways that allow for social distancing, and seating in groups in six-foot intervals of no more than six people from the same household.
General admission (lawns, standing room, infields) will be permitted if masks are worn and if six-foot distancing can be marked and maintained.
Baughn said it’s a relief to be able to have a spring sports season this year after the 2020 season was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We are very happy to get back outside, but I would remind people that we are still going to have to have crowd limitations,” Baughn said.
Baughn outlined the following spectator guidelines for each home spring sports event:
• Baseball — 4-6 ticket vouchers per athlete
• Softball — 4-6 ticket vouchers per athlete
• Track & field — 4-6 ticket vouchers per athlete
• Boys tennis — 4-6 ticket vouchers per athlete
Baughn said no admission fee will be charged for home baseball, softball, and boys tennis events.
A $5 fee will be charged for home track and field events. Two home invitational track and field meets are scheduled this season.
Baughn noted that opposing schools may have different guidelines in place for their home venues and that Galion athletic officials will try to keep parents updated regarding guidelines at away events.
“I hope they’re not more limited, but as experience has shown us this year, away fields may not allow us to have six fans (per player). We’ll let you know week by week, location by location, with the baseball and softball coaches,” Baughn said. “Away venues will probably (allow) two to six (ticket vouchers) per athlete. For track, we do expect a $5 to $10 charge for tickets at most (away) track events. The larger meets may reduce fan capacity, but again, we won’t know that until we get closer to the events.”
Baughn said spectators must present a ticket voucher at the gate in order to purchase a ticket. No passes will be accepted.
Superintendent Jennifer Allerding gave a “shout out” to Baughn and middle school athletic director Dave Rinehart for the work they’ve put in managing the state health guidelines for athletics so far this school year.
“We’re super-excited to have spring sports and I appreciate (Baughn) taking time to address the safety factors that we need to put in place to continue to allow our spring athletes to compete,” Allerding said. “I think last year was devastating whenever our spring athletes could not compete. While we are certainly in a different spot than we were in the fall, we want to continue to do anything and everything that we can to make sure that these students have the opportunity to compete.”
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