Waxers Return to Hockey, News (Markham Waxers)

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Waxers Return to Hockey
Submitted By Deb Larsen on Thursday, August 13, 2020
To help us to finalize our Return to Hockey plans, we are asking for your input. Please complete our survey no later than Sunday, August 16.

Over the summer, the Waxers board has been monitoring the Covid-19 situation as it pertains to hockey. The health and safety of our members remains our top priority. The Waxers will offer a hockey program this fall that complies with the regulations and guidelines of the Ontario Government, Hockey Canada (HC), the Ontario Hockey Federation (OHF), the Ontario Minor Hockey Association (OMHA), the York Public Health Unit (PHU), and the City of Markham.

The OHF Return to Hockey Framework provides the outline for a phased approach to return to hockey programming. You can download the document from the OHF website. See page 8 for a summarized look at the different stages of the return framework.

We are in Stage 3A of the OHF’s framework until August 31. Beginning September 1, we enter Stage 3B. Stage 3B allows us to offer registration, allocation of groups, and group training. Registration is limited to players who played with the Waxers during the 2019-2020 season or those who are new to hockey. When we enter Stage 3C, tentatively planned for the end of September, we can offer practices with physical distancing and 3-on-3 or 4-on-4 game play with no physical contact.

Given those parameters, the Waxers will offer a program that focuses on getting back on the ice for fun, fitness, and skill development. Initial plans have AAA tiered players involved with all skaters for the development period and then moving to a separate bubble.

Registration is limited to players who played with the Waxers or UMHA during the 2019-2020 season or those who are new to hockey. Players in the Lake Ontario Region (LOR) that were imports in the 2019-2020 season have the option to stay with the association they were registered with in 2019-2020 or to return to their residential association. Players on AAA waivers may stay with the association they were registered with in 2019-2020 or return to their residential association.

Program Framework (subject to change)

  • Modified 3-on-3 or 4-on-4 game play with no physical contact.

  • Rosters will consist of nine skaters and one dedicated goalie for 3-on-3 or eight skaters and one dedicated goalie for 4-on-4. Bench staff will include one certified coach and one certified trainer.

  • Tiered divisions: House League, Select/AE/A, AA/AAA. There are no tryouts. Levels will be based on the category in which you played last year. Players from last year’s rep and select teams will be grouped into two divisions and distributed between teams to balance the divisions.

  • Divisions (bubbles) will be limited to 50 players. Players will not cross divisions/bubbles.

  • One-hour practice and one-hour game per week.

  • Late September start (subject to change).

  • Limited spectators (likely maximum of one spectator per family).

  • No access to change rooms (players will come dressed and socially distanced areas to put on skates will be provided).

  • Costs to run the program are being developed and depend on registration numbers but will likely be approximately $700 for the season. Information on the cost for the AAA tier will follow when AAA plans are finalized.

  • Staggered payments will be available. Payments will be due at the start of the season and on the first day of each month.

  • Safety protocols will be put into place, including screening of all participants (players and spectators) prior to every game and practice, tracking all participants at each game and practice, and immediately notifying each member of any confirmed or suspected cases within their bubble.

These plans are subject to change as the stages and regulations of our governing bodies change.

To help us to finalize these plans, we are asking for your input. Please complete our survey no later than Sunday, August 16.

With your input, the board will finalize plans for the season. Details on registration and timelines will be posted on our website in the coming weeks.

If you have questions or concerns, please email them to [email protected].

Thank you for your continued support. We look forward to seeing you back at the rink!

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