PLEASE READ THOROUGHLY
Health and safety will be of absolute paramount importance. Every other aspect of the club will be secondary to keeping everyone virus free. Although playing outdoor tennis seems to be a somewhat safe activity during the current pandemic, entering an indoor, enclosed facility is completely different. Many of our older members are particularly susceptible to COVID-19. Numerous changes will be necessary in order for the upcoming season to take place.
Opening Day at Hudson Valley Indoor Tennis is so far still on track for Sunday, October 4. This assumes that COVID-19 case counts remain low. We will immediately close the club if caseloads spike. As much as we all love tennis, it is not worth becoming ill over. Prior to your first play, every member will need to sign a statement that they have read and will abide by all rules.
We hope to completely reset for a post-pandemic 2021-2022 season. What this means is that all of the rules and changes that will be in place for this coming season are (hopefully) only for this season. Every group or person who had reserved time in the 2019-2020 season will retain the right of first refusal for that time slot in the 2021-2022 season. Even if you never set foot in HVIT this coming season.
We understand that what we lay out below is a lot to digest, but we believe you will adjust to this unusual indoor tennis season faster than you might think. Many of you have already been following new safety protocols playing outdoor tennis.
After reading all the actions the club will be taking, we encourage you to reply to this email with your thoughts. For example, would you feel safe playing singles? How about doubles? Is it your current intention to play indoor tennis (we won’t hold you to your answer!) this coming season?
HEALTH AND SAFETY ACTIONS HVIT IS TAKING
-There will be hand sanitizer right inside the entrance and on both courts
-There will be disinfectant wipes on both courts
-There will be air purifiers in the clubhouse and in both bathrooms
-Our high quality clubhouse air exchange system will be run extensively
-We will leave the clubhouse and court building doors and windows open whenever feasible.
-There will be no children in the club this coming season
-Clinics will be limited to three or perhaps four people
-We will disinfect the clubhouse and court chairs regularly
In addition, we are exploring ways to bring significant amounts of fresh air into the court building. This would be cold air, so consider wearing sweat pants and sweat shirts – at least until you warm up. We plan to run the heaters more, but everyone will need to do their part.
WHO WILL BE ALLOWED INTO HVIT
-Only members who have been:
-staying at home except for essential tasks
-working from home or in an environment where social distancing is practiced
-staying off any type of public transportation (including planes)
-not commuting (including to New York City)
-to only gatherings where social distancing was strictly enforced
If you do not meet the above criteria, or if you have even the slightest suspicion that you were near an infected COVID-19 person, we expect you to remain out of the club for two weeks or until you provide evidence of a negative coronavirus test.
If you have played at HVIT and then find out you have COVID-19, please contact the club at once. This is of vital importance.
No out-of-town guests or non-members will be allowed into the club for any reason.
We do not know how stringent the rules in other local indoor facilities (Black Acre Tennis, Total Tennis, Rhinebeck Tennis) will be. Be aware that if other facilities are not following strict safety protocols, including clinic maximums, then we will not be allowing players who also play at those facilities into HVIT – even if they are HVIT members. So it is possible you may have to choose only one club to play at for the upcoming season. We reserve the right to not allow players into HVIT for reasons of safety.
HEALTH AND SAFETY PROTOCOLS THAT HVIT WILL REQUIRE
All rules are mandatory. If you do not believe you can follow every one of the rules then do not join HVIT for the coming season.
–You must enter the clubhouse with clean hands
-If you need to sneeze or cough, please do so into your elbow or into a tissue
-You must enter the clubhouse wearing a mask that covers both your nose and mouth. Masks should remain on at all times except when members are actually playing. Some people may not even mind wearing a mask during play; if this is the case then we encourage you to wear it throughout your time at the club.
-Enter HVIT right when your time slot begins. There will be a clock above the front door synched with the court clocks. Even if the court is empty, please do not enter early. This is for health and safety reasons. Please keep six feet away from other people entering the club. Only staff will be allowed on the elevated lounge/viewing area.
-Proceed directly through the clubhouse and onto the court unless you need to quickly change your shoes or pay for your court. For this season only, tennis shoes can be worn into the club. Please clean them thoroughly on the mat/scraper outside the front door.
–We encourage people to touch as little as possible. For example, consider opening doors with something other than your hand (perhaps a towel or your shirt tail).
-Once on the court please assign yourself one of the four court chairs and place your tennis bag/gear next to it. The chairs will be well spaced out. Do not move the chairs. If you plan on sitting in the chair, we suggest you take a disinfectant wipe and clean the arms, back and seat of the chair.
-Leave nothing on the court. Wipes, water bottles, balls, cans, tissues, etc all need to go into your tennis bag. There will be no garbage cans at the club. This insures a touchless environment.
-There will be no water available at the club this coming season. Please bring your own water bottle for each play.
-Every person should bring a new can of balls. The USTA recommends that people not from the same household each use their own new balls which are marked with their initials. Only they should handle these balls. If a group that does not quarantine together decides to play with just one can of balls, the USTA recommends wearing gloves or using hand sanitizer frequently.
-Doubles players should make every effort to stay six feet apart. Please make no whispered instructions, high fives, hugs, etc. In addition, do not yell out the score or whether the ball was in or out. Instead, speak in a moderate voice or use hand signs. Never use a loud voice (which could expel viral droplets).
-Each player or team should remain on one side of the court for the entire allotted time.
-When your time is up, please promptly put on your mask, leave the court and go straight outside. There must be no socializing at this point in the club.
-Bathrooms will be open, but are for emergency use only. Showers will be off-limits.
-We ask that not more than one person use a bathroom at a time. Please wear a mask while you are in the bathroom. The hand dryers should not be used. We will provide paper towels to dry your hands, but these too, once used, must be put in your bag to take home.
-Please plan on coming to the club in your tennis clothes so you do not need the bathroom as a changing area.
BOOKING PLAY AT HVIT (FOR THE 2020-2021 SEASON ONLY!)
There are no contracted time slots for the 2020-2021 season for the following reasons:
1) We are going to space out plays. For example, a group that finishes at 9:30am will not be followed onto the court by another group until 10am. These gaps will increase safety, but will also throw off everyone’s original contract slots.
2) Epidemiologists believe that a virus upswing this winter is possible. If this happens we will likely (temporarily) close the club.
3) We do not want our members to pay for a full season of tennis and then possibly have to make a choice between safety and their money.
Though there will be no contracts, we believe most people will be able to get court time. Some members will simply not qualify to play at HVIT this year based on their not meeting all of the requirements laid out above (being exposed at work, traveling, deciding to play at other clubs that may have more lenient policies, etc).
To make it a little easier to book time at HVIT, once you play in a certain time slot, you have the right to that same exact slot a week later. For example, if your group plays on the first Sunday of the season from 8am-9:30am, you will have first right of refusal to play the following Sunday at the same time. You must let the staff know when you enter the club if you plan on using the same time slot the following week.
PAYING FOR TENNIS AT HVIT
Since there will be no contracted play for the 2020-2021 season, everyone will be on a pay-as- you-go status. This means you simply pay before you go on the court. There will be three ways to pay:
1. Bring a check for the amount you owe for the day’s play
2. Bring a check for a larger amount that will go on file for future plays (this is a good option for members who expect to play regularly).
3. Have exact cash for that day’s play
Write your name and the date on the envelope provided, and place payment in the envelope. Put the envelope in the payment box near the clubhouse stairs. This will allow for a touchless transaction.
Please be aware that members who want to roll their time slot forward each week will need to pay for two weeks the first time they come in (for play on that day and to reserve the court for the following week). If you continue to roll your time slot forward, you then need to pay for only one play at a time. This is to reserve the time slot for people or groups who want to essentially have a guaranteed time each week. The slot will open to other members unless it is immediately reserved. The money paid in advance to hold the court is non-refundable.
Current members who have a credit left over from the shortened 2019-2020 season can use the credit first and will not owe anything until it is used up.
COST OF TENNIS AT HVIT
For the coming season only, we are changing – and simplifying – our pricing. We will have only two fees: $40 per hour for any time Monday through Friday (including what was previously prime-time) and $50 for any time on the weekend. This very simple fee structure will make exact change – for those paying with cash – much easier to accomplish. We realize that some of you will pay a little less than before, and some will pay a little bit more. This fee schedule is for safety – not economic – reasons. We hope to revert right back to our old fee structure for future seasons.
There will be the usual annual $50 membership fees. There will be no guest fees because there will be no guests this coming season!