The decision regarding spectators at athletic events and other activities can now be made at the discretion of each school following a meeting held today between John Felton, CEO of RiverStone Health, and local school district superintendents and athletic directors. This is a reversal of a previous directive banning any spectators from all school activities. Other schools throughout the county are customizing their own plans for spectators at their events.
Beginning with home games for Huntley Project Junior High on September 5, each participant will be given three tickets to home activities. Two parents or guardians of each opposing team’s athletes will be allowed into the event. Those parents must provide phone numbers to the athletic director 24 hours in advance of the event for contract tracing. Masks are required, and it is recommended that families sit together in a group and practice social distancing. This weekend, there will be no gate fees for fans attending Huntley Project Junior High events. Concessions will not be available until at least mid-September, and then they will be available based on availability and circumstances.
The various sports will have distinct guidelines based on the setting and situation. For example, for football, spectators will either stand on the track or sit in the bleachers with their families. Every other group of two rows will be taped off to allow for safe social distancing at volleyball games. All activity participants must have their own water bottle. All equipment must be labeled with each student’s name to ensure that they are not used by the wrong student. All spectators will be asked to leave as soon as the event is over, and no fans will be allowed on the field or court. Gloves will be worn by anyone handling money, and sanitizing stations will be available throughout the events. Any family members with compromised immune systems or who show any symptoms related to COVID-19 are encouraged to stay home and watch the activity online.
According to the Mark Wandle, Huntley Project School Superintendent, “The Huntley Project School District is committed to providing a safe environment for our athletes, coaches, event workers, and spectators. We are consulting with the Yellowstone County Health Department and implementing strategies to mitigate the potential risk of COVID-19 at our school activities. These measures are being taken to address the possibility of COVID-19 in our school system and preventing further spread. We appreciate your patience and flexibility as we navigate through these times.”
Additional details will be forthcoming as everyone adjusts to these changes.