July 12th, 2021
Nova Scotia will be entering phase four of the reopening plan this Wednesday, July 14. Participants and officials in organized performing arts and sports (recreational, amateur and professional) can continue to gather with up to 25 people indoors and up to 50 people outdoors without social distancing for rehearsals, performances, practices, games and competition. Masks are recommended outdoors when you can’t maintain a minimum physical distance of 2 metres (6 feet) from others.
Spectators will be permitted (indoor and outdoor) for sports and performing arts hosted by a business or organization that have an event plan, and facilities will be permitted to have spectators for up to 50% of capacity of the facility with a maximum of 150 people indoors and 250 people outdoors.
Golf tournaments (tee times, split tees, shotgun start etc.) are permitted within the gathering limit protocols. It is strongly recommended that you have a detailed plan for your tournament and have that plan clearly communicated amongst staff, volunteers and participants.
June 15th, 2021
Nova Scotia will be entering phase two of the reopening plan tomorrow. As of Wednesday, June 16 at 8:00am, players, participants and officials in organized sports (recreational, amateur and professional) can practice and train with up to 10 people indoors and up to 25 people outdoors without social distancing. Masks are recommended when you can’t maintain a minimum physical distance of two metres (six feet) from others.
The province indicated that competitions for golf and tennis will be permitted during phase two within the approved gathering limits.
June 12th, 2021
The Nova Scotia government has indicated that June 16 is the expected date for the province to move to Phase 2 of the reopening plan. Phase 3 is expected to be the begin June 30. While we do not yet have confirmation that golf events/tournaments will be allowed beginning June 30, we are actively preparing to execute as such.
We are now in a position to provide some clarification about what’s to come in Phase 3 of the reopening plan. Please CLICK HERE for the Sport Nova Scotia’s answers to the most frequently asked questions regarding sport restrictions for Phases 3 and 4. Based on this information, the NSGA is moving forward planning the following events:
- NSGA Women’s Amateur & Senior Championship – July 2-4 at Clare Golf & Country Club
- Halifax Jaguar Land Rover Junior Championship – July 6-8 at Digby Pines Resort Golf Club
- NSGA Men’s Amateur Championship – July 9-11 at Avon Valley Golf & Country Club
The remaining Provincial Championships for this season are expected to run as scheduled. We are working on the logistics to reschedule the Halifax Jaguar Junior Team Championship and the NSGA Men’s Four-Ball Championship.
We understand that this information may not answer all of your questions regarding golf tournaments.
Course operators – Please review the Order of the Chief Medical Officer (CLICK HERE), the reopening plan, and the current protocols, restrictions and guidelines. The process is different this year, as there is not one “golf industry” document to refer to. There is a 2021 Golf Playbook that has been submitted to Public Health; it is under review and will likely be in place later this season.
Golfers – Please consult with the host facility or organization with tournament-related questions.
Please know that the NSGA is working hard, on behalf of its stakeholders, to ensure the safety of golfers and course staff throughout the province. We are working closely with government, Public Health and Sport Nova Scotia to open our industry as much as we can. The NSGA is not in a position to dictate how golf facilities are to operate; we receive the information, request clarification as it relates to our sport, provide industry supporting documents and communicate it to our province’s courses and golfers. This a frustrating time for many and we appreciate your understanding and patience.
May 31st, 2021
Further to the update sent on Friday (May 28) and today’s provincial briefing, please see below:
Effective June 2nd two people from different households can share a golf cart provided they are within each other’s close social group of 10.
WITHIN PROVINCE TRAVEL:
As of June 2, the travel restriction concerning CBRM and HRM and described within the Order will be lifted.
Gathering limits must be adhered to. Outdoor gathering, after a game of golf, limited to a social group of 10.
May 28th, 2021
Nova Scotia Government Announces Five-Phase Reopening Plan with Phase One to Start June 2nd
Today, the Government of Nova Scotia announced their (click here) COVID-19 REOPENING PLAN which will be a five-phase plan with phase one beginning June 2nd.
During phase one, travel will no longer be restricted within most of Nova Scotia, although people are asked to avoid non-essential travel into and out of: Cape Breton Regional Municipality and into and out of areas of HRM, Hubbards, Milford, Lantz, Elmsdale, Enfield, Mount Uniacke, South Uniacke, Ecum Secum and Trafalgar.
The following restrictions will ease on June 2nd
· Nova Scotians can gather outdoors with a consistent social group of up to 10 people without physical distance.
· The limit for indoor gatherings remains the people you live with; two households with one or two people each can still join together but they must be the same two households all the time.
· Wedding and funeral ceremonies remain limited to five-plus officiants indoors but can increase to 10 plus officiants outdoors; there can be no receptions or visitations.
· Restaurants and licensed establishments can open patios at their maximum capacity with physical distancing between tables, a limit of 10 people per table and masks when people are not eating or drinking; they must stop service by 11 p.m. and close by midnight.
· All retail stores can operate at 25 per cent capacity, ensuring physical distance.
· Fitness and recreation facilities can offer outdoor activities with a limit of 10 people with physical distancing, or multiple groups of 10 that are distanced on their own property, as well as one-on-one personal training indoors.
Your NSGA, in partnership with PGA Atlantic, CSCM, AGSA, and NGCOA, continues to monitor Government announcements, seek clarification, and provide updates. Please do not hesitate to contact me should you have any questions.
May 27th, 2021
While Covid-19 continues to challenge us, we wish to thank club staff, owners, operators, managers and the individual players for keeping golf in our province a safe place and activity.
Recognizing that some facilities are busier than ever, others are negatively affected by the Municipal Boundary restriction. Please know that we have constant communication with NS officials as it relates to restrictions affecting our industry. In partnership with PGA Atlantic, NGCOA, CSCM and AGSA we do all that we can to assist facilities and golfers through this challenging time and will continue to do so.
As the pandemic continues to throw us curveballs so do protocols and interpretations of those protocols. We apologize for any confusion and will strive to provide clarity as best we can.
In an effort to keep everyone up to speed on current restrictions affecting golf please see below:
Please CLICK HERE for guidance on providing a safe workplace for employers and employees.
WITHIN PROVINCE TRAVEL:
Please CLICK HERE for the official description of the travel restriction within our province. Please CLICK HERE for the Direction of the Minister which further details the Municipal Boundary restrictions.
Please CLICK HERE for the official details on gathering limits. This applies to instruction, club fitting, checking-in, club events (Men’s Night, Ladies’ Day etc.) and cart riding/sharing.
FOOD/BEVERAGE & RETAIL:
Please CLICK HERE for restrictions and guidance as it relates to clubhouse, snack shop, halfway hut, and pro shop business.
May 17th, 2021
There may be some confusion out there and my hope is to provide some clarity here. Please see below for the information that was released by NS officials on May 17, 2021:
Travel within Nova Scotia:
Nova Scotians should remain as close to their home and community as possible, unless travel is essential for work, caregiving, necessary shopping or medical appointments, including vaccination appointments. In this instance, ‘community’ is defined as one’s municipality or county. Detailed information is available at https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/restrictions-and-guidance/
Please know that the NSGA has approached officials about this restriction, and others, and the impacts that it has on some golf courses and golfers. The response is quite clear, “travel outside your municipal boundary, for non-essential reasons, will not be permitted at this time”.
Thank you to all course operators and golfers for keeping golf safe. Please stay vigilant and let’s work together to get through this.
May 7th, 2021
“The situation we’re in right now in Nova Scotia is very serious. Our public health staff are overwhelmed and we need to get things under control,” said Premier Rankin.
Please know that as we maneuver through this storm, some restrictions will alter and change. It is vital for the golf community to adhere to these restrictions and guidelines, do not look for loopholes and do our part to keep golf courses open, course staff and golfers safe.
Recently, there have been a number of questions relative to different areas of golf that we hope to provide some clarification on, please see below:
GOLF COURSES are primarily captured in this section of the Order:
28.2 All not-for-profit and for-profit fitness facilities, recreation and leisure businesses, and organized clubs may offer outdoor fitness classes and other recreational activities up to a maximum capacity of 5 persons, or multiple groups of 5 each on their premises, while ensuring 2 metres (6 feet) physical distance between participants.
It’s important to note that physical distance is required, unless players are all from the same household.
CART RIDING – Cart riders should be from the same household. Households of 2 or less are permitted to gather (indoors or outdoors without physical distancing) with another household of 2 or less. ONLY if both cart riders are from households of 2 or less and are consistent in that they both only gather with each other and no other households throughout the period that these restrictions are in place.
For example, someone from a household of 2 or less would not be able to share a golf cart with someone from a larger household (3 or more), nor with someone from a household of 2 or less if either of them have already chosen a different household to gather “or bubble” with.
The applicable section of the order, 13.2(b), is below:
(b) where the number of persons living in the same household is 2 persons or less, they may gather together with up to a maximum of 2 additional persons, who shall be 2 consistent persons, and they are not required to practice physical distancing.
Effective immediately, ROTATIONAL WORKERS who are returning home from outbreak zones can no longer do the modified form of self-isolation. They must self-isolate for 14 days in a completely separate space from the other people in their households, but they can share a bathroom that is cleaned between uses. Except for their mandatory COVID-19 testing, they cannot attend medical appointments unless there is an emergency.
GOLF COURSES that have restaurants and/or have all or part of the facility liquor licensed are subject to this section of the order:
24. Restaurants and liquor licensed establishments are:
(a) restricted to providing food and alcohol take-out and delivery service only;
(b) prohibited from offering in-person dining, except to serve guests of the hotel within which a restaurant or licensed establishment is located.
For the purposes of these restrictions, we would consider food or alcohol service on the course to be delivery service.
IN TERM OF MASKS, the following sections apply to golf courses:
18.2 All persons must wear a mask that covers their nose and mouth while present in a public place.
18.1 For the purpose of section 18.2, a “public place” means the part of the following places accessible to the public,
and insofar as it is outdoors:
(n) all common areas of private indoor workplaces;
(p) all serviced areas of a restaurant or a liquor licensed establishment, including their patios but excluding holes on the golf course that are licensed;
WITHIN PROVINCE TRAVEL is clearly defined with this DOCUMENT. There is are still penalties for failure to comply with this Direction.
RETAIL – Retail is closed for in-person service. The intent here is to limit people gathering and socializing in spaces that normally don’t interact. This is the case for every non-essential retail business across the province. Pro shops are limited to only facilitating the transactions needed for the round of golf or driving range. Pro shops can sell merchandise, but we ask that it align with public health advice for curbside pickup.
Section 14. Notwithstanding section 13.1, persons may engage in outdoor physical activity while adhering to the gathering limitations set out in section 13.2 or the gathering limitations while participating in an outdoor fitness class and other recreational or leisure activities as set out in section 28.2, and in doing so, must adhere to physical distancing requirements of 2 metres (6 feet) as set out in section 13.
28.2 All not-for-profit and for-profit fitness facilities, recreation and leisure businesses, and organized clubs may offer outdoor fitness classes and other recreational activities up to a maximum capacity of 5 persons, while ensuring 2 metres (6 feet) physical distance between participants.
BE IN THE KNOW, phone ahead, check websites, and know the protocols and restrictions in place at the golf facility that you plan to visit. Bookmark this PAGE and check it on a regular basis.
BE COGNIZANT that not all Nova Scotians play golf. The pandemic is affecting people and families differently. The NS Golfing Community is lucky to be able to continue our passion.
April 28th, 2021 Update
As a result of yesterday’s briefing, Premier Rankin and Dr. Strang announced additional restrictions for the province. The good news again…golf courses may remain in operation!
Please know that it is not the position, nor the intent, of the NSGA to instruct operators on how to run their respective facilities.
Please CLICK HERE for the news release.
Within Province Travel
No unnecessary travel between communities; a community is defined as the municipality where you live – people should stay as close to home as possible when accessing essential or necessary services or products.
Mandatory masking outdoors where physical distancing cannot be maintained, including playgrounds and parks. In private indoor workplaces such as offices or warehouses, masks are mandatory in all common areas, places where there is interaction with the public, areas with poor ventilation, and areas where distance cannot be maintained.
Food & Beverage – Restaurants and licensed establishments are closed for dine-in service, but contactless take-out or delivery is allowed.
Lessons, Clinics & Club Fitting – Outdoor recreation activities, including individual sports, are allowed and encouraged; outdoor fitness and recreation businesses and organized clubs can operate with a maximum of five people and physical distancing. THE GOLF SECTOR IS SEEKING CLARIFICATION ON TEACHING, CLINICS, CLUB FITTING AND DRIVING RANGE OPERATIONS – UPDATE WILL BE SENT AS SOON AS WE HAVE ONE.
Pro Shop Operations – Retail stores are closed for in-person service unless those stores provide services essential to the life, health or personal safety of individuals and animals. THE GOLF SECTOR IS SEEKING CLARIFICATION ON PRO SHOPS – UPDATE WILL BE SENT AS SOON AS WE HAVE ONE.
Please make yourself aware of the rules, restrictions, guidelines and protocols. CLICK HERE for this information. As mentioned previously, golf has done a wonderful job thus far weathering this storm. It is in the best interest of your business and of our industry to err on the side of caution and make safety the priority.