COVID-19 Response

Dear Membership, Junior Parents, and Youth Sailors,


The 2020 Hampton Yacht Club Junior Program is celebrating its 70th year of providing excellent instruction and leadership in the sport of sailing to Southern Bay youth. The sailing center staff and I are very excited to help develop and grow your skills on the water this summer for those that have already signed up! If you have not registered out of caution due to the evolving COVID-19 pandemic, we understand you probably have some questions regarding the additional safety measures that we are taking. This is an unprecedented and fluid situation and as conditions develop, we want to ensure you that HYC remains committed to your health and safety.

The Brady Sailing Center and Clubhouse were closed since Governor Northam’s stay at home orders in mid March and club fleet assets were grounded. The classrooms have been sanitized and will continue to be meticulously cleaned by our maintenance department to provide a safe environment. Even with these best practices I understand if there are reservations you may express upon opening of the summer program so I would like to share with you some significant updates in procedure that will be instituted this summer.

  1. Class sizes will be updated to correspond with Governor Northam’s orders and CDC guidelines for gathered groups. This number is currently 10 people including the instructor. This would reduce three slots below our normal class size of 12; we will adjust registration accordingly and be happy to work with you to find the best classes for you to fit your needs.
  2. Personal refillable water bottles and sunscreen are mandatory and not to be shared with anyone. Students must also bring their own appropriate USCG approved lifejacket, there will not be any shared safety or personal equipment.
  3. During classroom instruction students/instructor will need to maintain best practices for social distancing and online briefings for older students may be utilized.
  4. Hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes are available at the entrances to both buildings. Buildings will be cleaned by maintenance staff daily.
  5. There will be strict procedures for entering and exiting the Brady Sailing Center buildings. Drop off and pick up will occur at the Bridge Street entrances. Doors will be propped open and monitored by sailing center staff to decrease contact with surfaces during this time and prevent unauthorized entry.
  6. Careful consideration is being given to monitoring temperatures and the Junior Advisory Board is working to finalize a procedure for our response if a student would test positive for COVID-19. The Junior Advisory Board and I are also looking at the best practices for social distancing for inclement weather days when students would be forced inside.
  7. The Junior Advisory Board voted to give a 100% refund to those scheduled for any week of classes that may be impacted due to COVID-19. If a week of classes is lost and you would prefer to transfer your registration to a class held at a later date that will also be available.

 

In regards to race teams the regatta landscape is still very uncertain. US Youth Championships have been postponed, many CBYRA events are looking to move to later dates, and some events have been outright cancelled. One of the problems we are facing as a country is that many youth events have traditionally occurred on week days. With many parents out of work, or those unable to take time off, events are being forced to look at the already over scheduled weekends. I have been conducting Zoom Meetings with coaches and directors throughout the country and the general consensus is that moving forward we will need to create better local competition to supplement the long distance travel events. Events like the Commonwealth Cup may see a higher rise in competitiveness. There is also hope in establishing a smaller circuit among the local Southern Bay clubs. I am increasingly hopeful that we will have events, but please understand the schedule is forever changing and we are committed to providing you with the best opportunities. At this time I do not plan to restructure the race team fee, if a portion of the summer is lost, I intend to add more clinics throughout the remainder of the race team calendar so that you still get the best value for the time we are able to spend on the water and in the classroom. The largest change is that race teams will be offered for a full day to help with parents that need to work.

These changes in our daily operating procedures were developed with the utmost concern for the health and safety of our students and athletes in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. HYC will continue to adhere to the US Sailing phrase of “monitor and adjust.” As sailors we are used to unforeseen challenges and adapting as necessary. As conditions change the Junior Advisory Board, club management, and myself will continue to reevaluate our program requirements as necessary and update you as appropriate.

Please let me reiterate that our top priority is to ensure the health and safety of our students and staff. HYC will continue to monitor and adhere to the government and CDC guidelines in the response to COVID-19 and will keep you informed. Please stay safe and healthy and I greatly look forward to when I can be on the water with you again. As always, if you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact me at sailingdirector@hamptonyc.com