SMRA Covid Q & A

St. Marys Ringette Association Q and A (Sept.6, 2020)


Q1.      What stage are we at and what does that mean?

A1.       SMRA is at stage 2. Our COVID package was approved by the PRC & Ringette Ontario assigned it a score of 99/100. That means that when ice is ready October 1, our players will be able to get back to the ice.


Q2.      What is needed to complete registration at this point? Why is payment split into instalments?

A2.       You need to have registered your player using RAMP, submitted your signed waivers and paid the first instalment of registration $200 - COVID Discount from the 2019-2020 season. You can choose to pay your lottery fees $100 at this time as well. We would like the lottery submitted by September 15, 2020 as well, but it is not a requirement of your registration. Two payments allows for flexibility for our members and allows us to determine a more accurate reflection of our costs for the whole season. There are many unknowns as you can imagine. 


Q3.      How will teams be organized?

A3.       Ringette Ontario will not permit team formation until Stage 4. Stage 2 allows for groups to be created. Your Executive is working hard to organize players of similar age and ability into groups of 10 skaters with a bench staff to support the skill development of every player. At this time, we can not accommodate requests for group placement. When we make it to Stage 4, we will formally run tryouts for provincial play and establish teams to carry us through to the end of the season.


Q4.      Other associations and ice sports are playing games. Why isn’t SMRA?

A4.       There is only 1 ringette association (Walton) who is currently at Stage 3: Return to Modified Game Play. Every other ringette association is either at Stage 1 or Stage 2 like us. Games are not allowed at Stage 1 or 2. In St. Marys, neither hockey nor ringette can have modified games until the PRC progresses to Phase 2. That won’t happen until the second ice pad goes in. The decision of only 1 ice pad was made by Town Council at the end of August. At this point, neither Minor Hockey nor Ringette are playing games.


Q5.      What is needed to get to Stage 3: Modified Game Play?

A5.       Your COVID Subcommittee has been working hard all summer to move us from Stage 1 to Stage 2 and then to Stage 3. In order to get there, our next package requires 3 parts:

  • Mini League Schedule: an ice schedule showing the practice to play plan
  • Letter from local Municipality supporting modified game plan
  • Mini League Structure: organization of groups for safe play


Q6.      What will the Modified Mini League Structure look like?

A6.       The Huron Perth Public Health (HPPH) and Ringette Ontario (RO) restricts Mini League play to a bubble of 50 players within our local health unit boundary of Huron Perth. Because our groups are set at 10 players, we have room for 4 other groups in our Mini League. Depending on which stage other Associations are at, we could have a Mini League that includes teams from Mitchell, Seaforth-Exeter and Goderich.


Q7.      What are the COVID protocols we need to follow?

A7.       Players need to submit their attendance using the RAMP app to an event 48 hours in advance. Only those who pass the self screening will be allowed in the facility. Players are to come fully dressed (except for skates and helmet) as dressing rooms are not available at this time. For groups U10 and younger, a parent may accompany each player to tie skates and then observe physical distancing measures within the PRC to stay. Parents of U12 and older player age groups are asked to leave the facility after tying skates (for practices). During Mini League game play, each player is allowed 1 spectator.


Q8.      Has COVID changed what needs to be in my player’s ringette bag?

A8.       Yes. In addition to the standard equipment needed, each player will need:

  • A water bottle with their first and last name clearly written on it
  • A bag for their helmet and gloves. We recommend a pillow case.
  • A mask
  • Hand sanitizer
  • A practice jersey and ring with your player’s name will be handed out at the first practice for use over the whole season. This is another way for the SMRA to reduce the added costs while saying “Thank you” for your patience and understanding.


Q9.      When will I know which group my player is in and who my player’s bench staff is?

A9.       Group formation will be finalized following September 15. Using the RAMP app, group rosters will be formed and bench staff will send out an email.


Q10.    How can I help and where can I look for up to date information?

A10.     Consider volunteering! We need more bench staff as a result of smaller group size. Whether you have played ice sports as a youth yourself or this is your first season with Ringette, there is a role for you. Coaches, managers, trainers and parent volunteers for COVID-Attendance sign ins are just some of the places we need people this year. There will also be fundraising activities such as Elmira Chicken where help is always appreciated. In terms of information, the SMRA website is your best source of accurate information. You can also follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for updates.


Q11.    Can my athlete play or participate in more than one activity at a time (eg. hockey, 4H, volleyball, musical training etc.)?

A11.     Most organizations, like Ringette Ontario, recommend participating in only 1 activity at a time to limit your risk and exposure. With no way to monitor this though, it is only a recommendation and families will need to make the decision that is best for them.


Q12.    What if my athlete is feeling unwell?

A12.     Stay home and follow the protocols that will be released prior to your first ice time.


Q13.    It sounds like different associations are doing things differently. Why is that?

A13.     We all must follow Ringette Ontario’s guidelines. Different associations fall in different municipalities and different Health Units which could have different rules in place. This likely explains most of the differences.


Q14.    Are parents allowed on the ice with younger players?

A14.     Yes, but not as in the past. Our FUN1 U6 program will allow for one parent on the ice with each player. Those parents must follow the same protocols as the players.

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