Over the past five weeks, our soccer community has been carefully navigating the restart of our sport. So far, we have opened in all counties, and moved through the recommended stages and tested a tournament with no reported outbreaks or serious breaches of our return to play protocols.
When following our Restart 2020 program at its minimum standards, a club can move through Stage 1 through Stage 3 every two weeks. This will take approximately 40 % of the membership through August 1 and the remaining 60% to August 7. Stage 4, which is a full return to play for tournaments and leagues, was reserved for our determination. With continued caution and care, we are prepared to recommend that clubs may move into Stage 4, as appropriate with their six week return schedule.
August tournaments have been sanctioned and have been advised of their additional responsibilities to operate safely and within the confines of the Governor’s orders. You find the list of sanctioned tournaments on our website. Please know that tournaments are limited in size and scope. Playing the games is the important aspect of these events. There will be no congregating, camping out or lingering at the fields. Expect concessions to be limited, if available at all. Spectators may be restricted as well. Please respect and comply with the tournament policies as well as our responsibilities as citizens.
We continue to advise you that there are still risks and possible exposure to COVID-19. We urge you as individuals and communities to continue practicing the necessary mitigation strategies of wearing a mask, social distancing and minimizing spectators. We again remind you that each individual and organization must assess the risk and make certain determinations for themselves.
Please be sure to keep your league, club or tournament action plan updated and available for any member or guest to see. Transparency and communication is an equally important strategy for us to successfully operate this season. Please continue to consult our website. We have reorganized our COVID pages for easier navigation and have added a Frequently Asked Questions page that should assist you better moving forward.
Over the next few weeks, please be on the lookout for our traditional start of the season information. As we move from crisis mode to regular season operations, we still have our normal work to do. Registration, coaching education, referee training, laws of the game changes, insurance certificates, player safety initiatives and the like will all be addressed.
Thank you for your patience and care for each other over the past five months. With that continued caution and care, we will train and play tournaments in August as we always have (kind of) and Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer will open our 49th season on September 1st.
Be Well. Stay Safe. See you on a field soon!