Given the current situation of the COVID-19 pandemic in our province, the Ontario Volleyball Association (OVA) has made the difficult decision to cancel remaining Beach Tour & Satellite events as well as Beach Ontario Championships for the 2020 season. Ontario Championships were scheduled to take place August 1st and 2nd, as well as August 8th and 9th at Ashbridge’s Bay in Toronto.
The health and safety of all athletes, coaches, referees, support staff, volunteers and spectators is of primary importance and was the main consideration behind making this difficult decision. Complicating matters were logistical concerns due to the City of Toronto cancelling event permits for over 250 people until July 31, 2020, as well as the unknown possibilities of venue availability in August. The ability to ensure adequate training opportunities prior to the Championships and travel/accommodation bookings were additional factors that were taken into account during the decision-making process.
Developments in the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continue to change on a daily basis. The OVA will remain in contact with and follow the directions from Ontario Public Health and the Government of Ontario to ensure we are adhering to legislation and guidelines for team sports.
While the current gathering sits at five people in a group, the OVA will be ready if the government were to ease restrictions and allow for more people, which is what is needed for our sport. The association is currently working on ‘Return to Activity’ guidelines for the membership to follow which will be distributed as soon as it is clear that we are able to return to the courts.
As the summer months continue, it is the hope of the OVA that we will be able to deliver modified events, that will replace regular Beach Tour and Satellite events, to promote physical activity/play across various beach venues in Ontario rather than in mass gathering Beach Tour team events of the past that we have come to know and love.
More details on these individual events and any other initiatives will follow as more information is made available by the government.
This news of Beach Championships and Beach Tour cancellations is undoubtedly upsetting, and the OVA would like to thank all of you for being so positive and supportive in this unprecedented time. Over the past few months, we have seen and heard countless stories of how membership is persevering via social media and other digital platforms. Membership continues to impress us and find ways to make the most out of this uncertainty and we are undoubtedly preparing for when our game can be enjoyed again.
For any questions, please contact Suzanne Wallace, Manager of Beach Programs at firstname.lastname@example.org