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Recreational facilities, programs reopen in London following return to red-control: city officials

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City officials have provided new details regarding the resumption of indoor and outdoor recreational activities in London following the region’s return to the province’s colour-coded restrictions framework.

London-Middlesex returned to the red-control tier of the framework on Tuesday as it left the provincewide stay-at-home order put in place last month.

As a result, the city says it’s gradually resuming recreational programs and activities and reopening certain municipal recreation facilities over the next several days.

Read more: 2nd Middlesex-London vaccination clinic opens in Mount Brydges to serve rural communities

The first activity to return is outdoor skating at the Covent Garden Market and Victoria Park ice rinks.

Officials say the rinks reopened on Thursday and have a capacity limit of 25 people each at any given time.

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A wristband system has been implemented at the Victoria Park rink to clamp down on crowds both off and on the ice, like that seen in mid-December.

Municipal staff will hand out wristbands at the bandshell every morning at 10 a.m. which will allow for a 45-minute spot on the rink the following day.

“These will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Wristbands will be given out to a maximum of five people per family, and only one skater per day,” the city says in a statement.

More information on the wristbands can be found on the city’s website or by calling 519-661-5768.

Elsewhere, the city says the skating trail at Storybook Gardens will open on Saturday, while city arenas will open on Monday for indoor public skating programs.

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Pre-registration is required for both. Londoners are asked to register through Play Your Way or by calling 519-661-5575.

Matt Henry Gunther via Getty Images. Matt Henry Gunther via Getty Images

Those looking to take to the water will be able to starting on Saturday when aquatic services programs, such as recreational swims, aquafit, and fit swims, return.

The city says learn-to-swim and leadership courses will also start, but notes registration is required and can be done through Play Your Way.

Londoners eying other activities are also in luck.

Officials say indoor and outdoor recreational program opportunities will be available starting Monday at city community centres.

Read more: Booster shots, new clinical trials: What the COVID-19 variants could mean for vaccines

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Initially only select programs will be offered, but more programs will be available at the start of March, they say.

Registration for the programs opened Thursday and details on what is available can be found on the city’s website.

The city stresses that while the region has returned to the colour-coded framework, Londoners should continue adhering to all public guidelines as much as possible to curb the spread of the coronavirus, in particular as concerns mount over more contagious variants.

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