Golf courses were not mentioned on the list of allowable business services released last month by the provincial government due to the pandemic.
“The province of Saskatchewan declared their list of non-allowable businesses and golf courses were on that list,” Brian Lee, executive director of Golf Saskatchewan, said.
“However, the golf courses can prepare their pro shops, get ready for inside with their restaurants. And also the physical assets of the golf course can be maintained. So the superintendent and their staff can be ready to get the machinery ready by pulling off the tarps.”
According to the most recent economic impact report, it’s estimated roughly 17,000 people are employed — full-time, part-time, seasonal — at golf facilities in the province.
Lee said the allied golf associations in Saskatchewan, which is comprised of five industry partners, is committed to working with the government and been in contact with the business response team.
“We just have our fingers crossed that we can get the green light. And I know that the government and all of the chief medical officer and their staff are doing everything that they can,” he said.
“Our group simply looks forward to heathier days for everyone. Health and safety is of utmost importance … when the time is right to return to recreational normalcy, clubs and courses will be ready to welcome golfers back to all the facilities.”
There are 204 golf courses and driving ranges in Saskatchewan, Lee said.
He added the start of the active season is normally just after April 15, with courses opening from southern to northern areas of the province.
Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:
Health officials caution against all international travel. Returning travellers are legally obligated to self-isolate for 14 days, beginning March 26, in case they develop symptoms and to prevent spreading the virus to others. Some provinces and territories have also implemented additional recommendations or enforcement measures to ensure those returning to the area self-isolate.
Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.
To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out.
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