These restrictions have been updated. See our latest post for more information.
Are you ready to roll? I sure am.
The board has met and agreed that we’ll be able to play this year. But, while we’re all looking forward to playing, the county and state guidelines are cautiously sanctioning sports like ours, which will mean some changes to how we do things this year. So, here is our plan for playing during COVID-19:
Socially distancing must be adhered to. Everyone will need to maintain 6 feet from others who are not in their pod. To maintain enough space, we will only be using one court on each level. This will allow players on both teams to maintain a safe distance from others. Capos, since we don’t have any officials on site, we’re going to rely on you to remind everyone to keep distancing in mind.
This will have implications on the length of the season. More on that below.
Every person who comes on to the courts, whether playing or not, must wear a mask that covers both their nose and mouth. Masks may only be removed while eating or drinking, only while seated, and while maintaining a 6 foot social distance.
We’ve decided to specifically require folks to be seated when removing their mask, as it’s simply the easiest way to keep things safe without too much effort or reminders. This leaves no grey area for interpretation.
If you would refuse to wear a mask, regardless of whether you have been vaccinated or not, PLEASE do not come down to the courts. It should be routine by now that people take a mask with them when they leave their house. That routine must transfer to playing bocce.
In order to limit shared handling of bocce balls, we’re going to play games with two sets of bocce balls. This allows each player to have a dedicated pair of balls for their own use throughout the entire game. After each round, instead of rolling the balls forward to your teammate, you’ll roll your balls back to your end of the court instead.
Sanitation stations will be located at each end of the courts. Sanitize your hands before and after each game, before tossing the palino, and before handling court maintenance equipment.
Because of social distancing, only players within the same household can take measurements together. Typically, both teams tend to review measurements together. Instead this year, if both teams want to take a look, we need them to take turns. You’ll also need to sanitize your hands before handling the tape measures.
In order to limit shared surfaces, capos will pick a single person who will be responsible for paper scorekeeping.
Everyone coming to the courts will need to perform a self-check prior to arrival. If you have a fever above 100.4 degrees or cough, you need to stay home.
Every player will have to sign a new waiver, which we’ll be sending out shortly.
How successful we are this year will depend almost entirely on the commitment of all players and teams to work together toward a common goal of getting back to playing the game we love and miss. So, if you happen to take objection with any of the special rules, it’s probably best if you sit out this season. The failure of players and teams to follow these rules risk not only individual and team penalties, but cancellation of the season for everyone. We know no one wants that. We are all of us in this together.
Because we are only using two courts at a time, the number of matches for the season needs to be reduced. On average, teams will only be able to play every other week. In order to reduce the delay between matches, we’ve reduced division sizes to just 8 teams, preventing the traditional bye week. The plan is to play as many regularly scheduled matches as we can fit into the summer.
Additionally, we are going to be watching closely as state and local guidelines change. If we feel able to relax the distancing rules, we’ll try to schedule more matches, using all four courts.
And finally, some regular news. You can now find out which division your team has been assigned online.
Benicia Bocce Season 2021 - Divisions
You can click into each division to see the schedule, both for your division and your individual team.
Opening Day will be Sunday April 25th, just under a month away. We won’t be able to hold a one-off tournament this year. But, we will be holding a traditional playoff bracket. The schedule for that is to be determined. If we’re still only using two courts, it might take longer than usual to get through it.
Same as in the past, you can reschedule matches online. The full rules for rescheduling can be found in the Rules and Regulations, also available online.
We are going to send out invoices to capos to collect fees for the season. The invoice will request the full standard fee of $350 per team, plus $10 per player. But, we do not intend to charge full price for only half of a season. Hopefully soon, we’ll be able to use all four courts. And at the end of the season, we’ll process prorated refunds based on the number of matches we were able to play this year.
Note, once invoices are sent, the invoice will need to be paid prior to removing any players from your team. This allows us to have funds to refund the $10 player fee.
Invoices are due by the date of the Capo Meeting.
We’re going to be holding the Capo Meeting virtually this year. The meeting will take place on Saturday, April 10th, at 7pm. The video will be recorded, but please do not delay in watching, as important dates and information will be included.
YouTube Live Stream
That’s it for now! We’re so happy to be able to get together again this year. Hopefully, the trend continues towards opening up, and we can get the most of our long overdue summer. As always, if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Matt DeClaire