After having their last two seasons cut short by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Swift Current Curling Club released their return to play guidelines as they work toward a long, healthy season this fall and winter.

“The Board of Directors worked quite hard on this to ensure that we came up with something that would ensure our curlers and members stay safe throughout this whole curling season,” said Chris Haichert, General Manager of the Swift Current Curling Club. “So, for this season, we've released our return to play guidelines and long story short, all persons 12 years age or older entering into the Swift Current Curling Club facility must show proof of vaccination to be in our club. Basically, having your first dose by October 1 is accepted and the second dose by November 1.

“I don't see it being an easy decision for what the Board of Directors had to do, but keeping people safe, our members safe, the children of our curling club safe, I think, was paramount in all of this”, he added. “They made the difficult decision, but I think it’s the right decision to ensure that the members coming into our facility are vaccinated and we’re doing what we can as a facility to ensure that we can have a long, safe curling season.”

Haichert says proof of vaccination provided by the provincial government, including wallet cards and certificates downloaded from the MySaskHealthRecords website, will be accepted as well as letters from healthcare providers and the Saskatchewan Health Authority.

He adds other protocols will be in place as well, including mandatory masking indoors.

“So anytime you're indoors inside our facility, we're going to ask that you wear a mask. The only exception to this is while you’re out on the ice curling, that’s when you can take your mask off,” Haichert said. “We’re going to continue to monitor the directives coming from the SHA and the provincial government. We just want to make sure that we're doing everything we can to keep everybody safe that walks into our facility, so measures such as increased sanitation procedures within our facility, wiping down rock handles, door handles and rental equipment, scoreboards and doing a lot more deep cleaning of our facility... and communication is going to be key here. We all know it’s a fluid situation, constantly changing, we’re going to monitor it and we’ll do our best via email and social media to make sure all our members stay up to date and current with everything we’re doing down at the curling club.”

Icemakers started work on installing the curling ice surface at the Innovation Credit Union iplex on the weekend, and the Curling Club continues to take registrations for their leagues this season while preparing to welcome some of the biggest names in men’s curling for the IG Wealth Management Western Showdown over the Thanksgiving weekend.