Reopening underway for Sioux Lookout Day Care and Rec Centre programs and facilities
Tim Brody - Editor
The Municipality of Sioux Lookout has begun to reopen Day Care programing as well as programs and facilities at the Recreation Centre.
On July 21, the Municipality of Sioux Lookout advised through a media release that “Toddler and preschool programming is now available at the Biidaaban Children’s Centre, on reduced hours: services available between 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday to Friday.”
The Municipality also advised that Sioux Mountain Children’s Centre will remain closed for the time being due to staffing limitations.
“In accordance with directives from local, regional and provincial health, social service and education authorities, a number of measures have been put into place to ensure the ongoing health and wellness of the children we serve, as well as the staff. Outbreak response protocols, enhanced infection control measures, staff training on the use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in the daycare setting, and daily screening upon arrival are a few of the safety measure that have been established,” the Municipality advised, adding, “Prior to a child’s daily attendance at the children’s centre, the child along with their parent will be screened at the main entrance. If they fail to pass the screening, the child will be refused admission, as well, should a child become symptomatic through the day, they will be sent home immediately and the Northwestern Health Unit will be contacted for further direction.”
Anyone requiring childcare services can contact Biidaaban Children’s Centre at 737-4570 to have their child(ren) added to the waiting list.
The Recreation Centre and Memorial Arena in Sioux Lookout opened to the public on July 13, providing access to the main lobby and reception desk.
The Municipality advised on July 21 that, “additional recreation facilities will open on a staggered basis throughout the month of August and beyond”
Information on specific dates, times and availability of recreational spaces and programming will be provided on the Municipality’s social media channels (Facebook and Twitter), as well as the Municipal website (www.siouxlookout.ca).
The Municipality shared, “The following are highlights of what the public can expect at various facilities within the Recreation Centre during the month of August:
• Hours of Operation: 6:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., likely starting the second or third week of August (no evenings or weekends in August). Currently 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. for Reception Desk only. These hours will be reviewed weekly, and any changes will be communicated to the public.
• All visitors to the Recreation Centre will need to:
o be wearing a mask upon entry to the building
o check-in at the Front Desk, confirm that they are not displaying any symptoms of COVID-19, and will be signed-in by staff, to facilitate contact tracing should it be required. Staff will also explain updated rules and procedures to facility users, and provide a handout on these updated rules and procedures. The public can expect CHANGES to your Recreation Centre experience – please be patient and exercise cooperation.
• Memorial Arena: will remain closed for at least the month of August.
• Track: the walking track above the gymnasium will open in August, and providing everyone respects physical distancing, a mask will not need to be worn if walking along the track (but may be worn if the user so chooses). There will be absolutely no running. A Spin bike and two workout stations will also be available along the walking track.
• Squash Courts: will be opening during the month of August, with the following restrictions: maximum of two people permitted in the court area at any given time, court times will be in 45-minute increments, and there will be a 45-minute interval between each booking to allow sufficient time for sanitizing/disinfecting.
• Weight and Cardio Rooms: will be opening during the month of August, also. Each piece of equipment will have a perimeter around it (established by tape on the floor), masks will NOT need to be worn when within the “no mask zone” (but may be worn if the user(s) feels more comfortable) – however, masks must be worn at all other times, including going from one piece of equipment to another. Additional disinfectant and sanitizing materials will be available for the public to use.
• Gymnasium: will remain closed for the month of August, with the exception of Monday and Wednesday mornings to accommodate a maximum of 12 individuals wishing to play pickle ball.
• Change Rooms: will be available for limited use. Masks must be worn at all times in the change rooms, and showers will not be available during the month of August – and possibly longer.
• Sauna: will remain closed until provincial government restrictions are lifted.
• Memberships: we understand that people haven’t been able to use their memberships for the last several months. As was stated at the outset, Memberships that were in effect from the date of closure of our facilities to the public, will be extended for the duration of the closure. Individuals with Memberships must contact the Recreation Centre during the month of August to arrange for this extension – failure to contact the Recreation Centre to extend your membership will negate the possibility of extension.”
The Municipality of Sioux Lookout is advising anyone who may feel uncomfortable returning to the Recreation Centre to contact the Front Desk staff to have their membership put “on hold” for up to 60 days.
Arrangements must be made between August 14th and September 14th.
The Municipality also informed The Bulletin that Municipal playgrounds, parks and other green spaces opened for public use as of July 17th.
The Municipality also informed that its playground equipment located on 7th Avenue and at the Travel Information Centre will be sanitized once a day in the morning.
“Parents are encouraged to bring hand sanitizer for their children – just to be safe. Additionally, physical distancing requirements are still in place for all outdoor spaces,” The Municipality informed.
“We are eager to welcome the public back to our facilities, but we do ask that all of the restrictions and requirements for admittance are followed, so that we can do our part to reduce the likelihood of transmission of COVID-19, thereby protecting our staff and visitors to our facilities,” Municipal CAO Michelle Larose concluded.