Sporting clubs around the city are doing their best to ensure local sport remains COVIDsafe but volunteers admit they're relying on "people to do the right thing".
Orange Emus welcomed cross-town rivals Orange City when the greens hosted its first home game of the 2020 Blowes Clothing Cup on Saturday.
Normally a derby match would generate a crowd of 2000 people, but Saturday's attendance was capped and people were made to wait at the gate before getting in so numbers could be moderated.
Emus president Campbell Hedley said his club has been planning for its first game since the end of May and had the benefit of travelling for Forbes and then Bathurst to see how other clubs were handling the new regulations.
The club made regular announcements over the loudspeaker and ensured COVID marshals were visible at the ground, closed off sections of the clubhouse and canteen areas, marked out seats in the grandstand to ensure people were separated and closed off the car park inside the Oval to ensure there was adequate space at the ground.
Hedley said he was thrilled with how understanding people were at the ground and marshals didn't have to tell people to leave.
And the club's volunteers were hopeful spectators continue to be compliant with regulations for the rest of the season.
"We rely on people to do the right thing, and everyone was very compliant when they were at the ground," Hedley said.
"We filled up the 500 pretty quickly ... everyone's starved for something to do as well, and on a day like that normally, relatively early in the season, we're probably looking at 2000 people."
Emus also stream their home games, something the club has been doing for a couple of seasons now.
We rely on people to do the right thing, and everyone was very compliant when they were at the ground.Campbell Hedley.
Orange City has also decided to get the video camera out in 2020, making the decision to live stream their games as well, a move club president Steve Stone described as an obvious one.
"We had the streaming discussion quite early on and we didn't know how many numbers would be allowed to come to the games," Stone said.
"It really worked well on the weekend because of the numbers that were coming in and out of the stadium - not everyone could get in.
"It's great for people who don't live at Orange anymore and it's also a way for the players to go back and watch it."
Orange Netball Association president Jane Dennis says the effort needed to be put in every Saturday is much more than what she's used to but commended fans and players for cooperating.
"With the barricades, hand sanitiser and posters, it's certainly a lot more effort," Dennis said.
"It's also not as much of a social gathering as what it used to be with the one spectator per player rule. It's more about playing the game now... that's been a big adjustment.
"But, everyone's been cooperative and understanding of the changes."
Sporting Clubs' COVIDsafe requirements:
- The gathering must not exceed a total of 500 participants, which includes: a person engaged in the sporting activity, an official involved in the conduct or organisation of the sporting activity and a spectator of the sporting activity.
- The organiser must: develop and comply with a COVID-19 Safety Plan that addresses the matters required by the COVID-19 safety checklist.
- The organisers must keep a copy of the COVID-19 Safety Plan and make it available for inspection by an authorised officer as requested.
In addition to this, community sporting activity organisers may need to consider measures that may need to be implemented to adhere to the Public Health Order requirements. Some suggestions include:
- Limiting the number of fields/courts operating simultaneously at a venue or facility.
- Allowing additional time between training sessions and matches to ensure there are no more than 500 people onsite at any one time.
- Encourage participants not to spend additional time at the venue outside of their match and training activities - 'Turn Up, Participate, Leave'
- For junior sports, encourage only one parent/carer to accompany their child to the community sporting activity for the purpose of supervision.
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