The state of Vermont is set to open up for golf on Thursday, May 7, the Vermont Golf Association announced on Wednesday.
“Golf courses to open May 7. As a reminder, please be patient with golf courses as they do their best to prepare and re-open as soon as they are able,” wrote the Vermont Golf Association in a tweet.
There are now just two states in the U.S. that disallow golf, Maryland and Massachusetts.
As GolfNewsRI reported earlier this week, 36% of golf courses in the northeast are open for play.
That number will go up with Vermont now opening.
Vermont golf operations will only be open to Vermont residents, and those who have met the minimum 14-day quarantine requirement.
According to the release, visitors from other states, and countries, are still being asked not to come to Vermont.
• ALL tee times reservations and greens fee and cart payments must be made online or over the phone – PRO SHOP AND CLUBHOUSE AREAS SHALL BE CLOSED
• Customers and members not utilizing the practice areas are encouraged to stay in their car until ten (10) minutes before their tee time. Players should go directly to the first tee or practice facility when leaving their car. Golfer must bring their equipment (clubs, push cart) to the facility and it cannot be touched by anyone else. Pack in, pack out.
• Practice putting green, driving range, and chipping areas are permitted when staffed to enforce social distance guidelines. All touch points will be removed to include modifications to the holes to eliminate touches.
• Golf course staff will monitor the teeing area to disallow congregating around the 1st tee
• Strict social distancing shall be in effect. Golf course staff shall verbally explain social distancing and other procedures to players and/or post signage explaining social distancing and other procedures
• Tee time intervals must be at least 15 minutes between groups During the Round • Groups are restricted to no more than four (4) players at a time
• Golf cart usage is limited to one player per cart. Players are encouraged to walk
• All golfers must use their own clubs; no sharing, storing, valet service, or renting of clubs is allowed
• Flagsticks must remain in the hole. It is required that hole liners be raised so that players do not have to pick the ball up out of the hole
• Bunker rakes, ball washers, trash cans, penalty area stakes, sand containers, water coolers, scorecards, pencils, and all other touch points on the course shall be removed
• Food and beverage service and all F&B outlets are subject to State regulations at all times while patrons are on the property. Post-Round
• Players utilizing a cart shall drive it to a designated area and remove all trash and personal belongings from the cart
• All players shall go directly from the 18th green to their cars. Club cleaning and club storage will not be permitted.
• Golf course staff shall monitor parking lot areas to ensure no post-round congregating or tailgating
• Golf course staff shall disinfect golf cart interiors and touch points after the golfer completes their round. Golf carts shall be stored in a designated area separate from patron access.
2. Employee Training & Education Plan
Golf courses will keep current with government regulation.
• Practice good hygiene – regularly wash hands for at least 20 seconds
• Avoid touching your face
• Wear a mask or face covering in situations with person to person contact • Stagger working hours and breaks
• Assign equipment and tools to minimize exposure
• Clean and sanitize tools, equipment, and workstations after use • Employee meetings should be staggered or held in open spaces
• Lunch breaks should be taken alone, outdoors, or in one’s own workstation, vehicle, or car
• No shared carts or vehicles and no passengers.
If you feel sick, stay home, and contact your employer to discuss options, and otherwise follow the company’s normal policies regarding sick time, PTO, annual leave, or other applicable leave. In particular, if you are experiencing fever, cough, shortness of breath, or other symptoms indicative of COVID-19, you should notify your employer and stay home until you are free from symptoms for at least 24 hours or until otherwise cleared to return to work per company procedures.
If you are not sick but have a sick family member at home who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 or may have been exposed, you should notify your employer, and refrain from reporting to work until speaking with the company for further instructions. In consultation with the public health authorities and /or applicable health authority guidance.
3. Physical Distancing Plan
The golf industry will use safe workplace practices that include social distancing, remote working when possible, proper PPE, and cleaning and disinfecting as the precautions against COVID-19 spread.
Employees are expected to:
• Maintain personal space barrier – maintain at least 6 feet from each other
• Avoid any face to face meetings
• Avoid congregating
• Avoid person to person contact
• Wear facial covering in any situation with person to person contact
• Wash hands frequently with soap