February 10, 2021 Covid Update

February 10, 2021

February 10, 2021

Week 48 of Covid & Week 1 of vaccine arrival to Kerrobert – Such wonderful and welcome news this week that a number of health care workers and long term care residents from Kerrobert were able to receive their first dose of the Moderna vaccine.  For many, including myself, this news brought happy tears and some much needed hope for an eventual end to the restrictions.  There were many leaders in our community who committed to doing whatever they could to ensure the safety of our people and as Dr. Wentzel put it, “with careful staff around them, and a load of grace and dumb luck, we have not had any Covid-19 in our facility”.  May we continue to do what we can to keep our community safe; the end is in sight.

Current Covid 19 Guidelines
The Sask government extended the guidelines to Feb 19th.  We expect to hear another update on Tuesday or Wednesday of next week.  Here is a quick run down of what we will continue to follow :

·         Masks and social distancing must be must be maintained in all facilities and public spaces regardless of the activities (hockey practises, public skate, Walk this Way)

·         Reservations at our PCC for banquets, conferences, meetings, wedding and funerals will be limited to 30 people and no food or beverages are to be present or to be served and all guest must be seated for the duration.

·         Walk this Way program is currently allowing 8 people at one time.

·         Hockey training/practises for kids 18 and under, continue with a maximum of 8 kids on the ice.

·         Public Skate will allow 15 skaters on the ice to a maximum of 30 people in the building at one time (15 skaters, 15 spectators/parents).  Shinny is not permitted.

·         The skating ice remains available for rent.

·         One family at a time is welcome in the Library to browse for books.  A comfortable waiting room is available in case it is busy!  Curbside pickup remains available for those who do not wish to come into the building.

·         People may meet and greet outdoors with up to 10 people if physical distancing between households can be maintained.  Outdoor rinks allow for 30 people if social distancing is maintained and toboggan hills are open to unlimited numbers providing the hill is large enough for social distancing.

Swimming Pool and Park News
All 2020 spring and summer student applicants have been contacted as a reminder that resumes are due on Feb. 26, 2021 and that there are a number of training opportunities in February for those who are interested (First Aid & CPR, Water Safety Instructor, Bronze Courses and National Lifeguard Award).  A successful spring and summer season depends heavily on certified student applicants.  Without qualified students to work at the pool, we would struggle to offer lessons or a level of safety that we are required to offer to open.  The Canada Summer Student grant will provide 75% of financial assistance towards a Parks student from May to end of August.   The Communities Initiative Fund provides 100% of financial assistance to offer the Park Summer program.  Both of these grants have been applied for.

We are excited for the opening of the Kerrobert Pool in June of 2021 and work has started to ensure it will be a great season.  The Recreation Board is looking for direction on the future of our Kerrobert Pool as major decisions need to be discussed now in order to plan ahead.  The PCC, the Fairgrounds, the Parks, the Library and the Curling Rink all have committees who are committed to ensuring these facilities operate successfully.  The lack of a Swimming Pool committee is a problem for our community as we require community input and direction especially for such an aging facility.  If you are interested in being part of this committee, please contact the Recreation Department at 834-2344 or 834-8355.  Please consider this an invitation to voice your opinion on the pool and to help provide direction for it’s future.

Zamboni Replacement – 2021
Our 1998 Zamboni has served us well but continues to cause us numerous problems.  It has logged over 7000 hours and with replacement suggested at 6000, we have surpassed the recommended usage and it shows in the maintenance costs.  With these numbers in mind, our Facility Manager Kyle, has been shopping for options for new and used machines.  Used machines can be found in the $50,000 to $65,000 range and a new machine can be purchased in the $115,000 - $125,000 range.  Both options are being considered at this point and a decision will be dependant on how much can be raised.  We have received some interest regarding financial support for this project and the Recreation Board is working to determine a rate for sponsorship for the new Zamboni.  If you or your company is interested in supporting this important project, please contact the Recreation Department! This hockey season may not have been what we hoped, but we know it will return and we want to ready when it does.

Arena Closure Date
The natural ice is holding well and has remained safe for use.  The cold weather was unfortunately causing some trouble in our Zamboni room as we are struggling to keep lines unfrozen without the compressors running.  Our diligent staff continue to work through this problem.

Council is meeting tonight and will review the recommendation from the Rec Board to close the rink for use on Feb. 28.  This was another difficult decision but with Minor Hockey practises finishing up this week we would have a maximum of 3 committed hours of practises a week.  We have also been tracking how many people are using the ice for public skate and the numbers have been minimal; from 0 to 6 people per session.  Lastly, this extra time would provide our staff an extra month to complete other recreation work as we have a long list of duties that will be completed in the spring which include new playground equipment install, testing and prepping in both pools, new fencing and shale at the Fairgrounds, bleacher repair, picnic table install at the Courthouse, painting at the Fairgrounds and the rink, to name a few.

Prairieland Community Center
The PCC Committee has made the decision to complete painting in the main hall while the facility is quiet.  We have contacted the Walk this Way group that painting will be happening the week of Feb. 16 to 19, therefore there will be no walking or rentals during that week.  The hall remains opens for rentals of small groups and we continue to host a variety of meeting events in the hall along with Walk this Way.

Share some Love
This winter has been difficult to stay connected and the last two week of extreme cold have been especially hard.  Valentines Day is a good time to show our appreciation to health care workers and some love to our seniors and our neighbors who have been shut in.  Please consider putting a heart or hearts in your windows this week to show appreciation and love to those who deserve and need it!

A few reminders:

·         Remember to check ice depth at the Reservoir before use.

·         Our Handibus operates on Monday, Wednesday, Fridays by calling 834-7464.

·         The Library is open Tuesday 1:00 – 8:00, Weds. 2:00 – 6:00, Thurs. 9:00 – 12:00 and Fri. 9:00 – 1:00.

·         Courtroom Gallery remains open during the office open hours of 8:30 – 12:00 and 1:00 – 4:30.

·         Free public skate will run all week at the arena.  Check out the Town of Kerrobert webpage under Recreation and then Arena calendar to view the times.

·         Kerrobert History books are on sale for $20 from the Town office.

·         Recreation Board Annual General Meeting – March 8, 6:30 at the PCC

·         Courthouse Centennial Celebration and Rodeo 2021 – July 3-4, 2021

A common joke throughout 2020 since the onset of the pandemic had been, “what else could go wrong”?  This became a common meme on social media and often provided some humor.  It became easy to take notice of all the unfortunate events and chalk them up to being yet another result of 2020 and then to be watchful for the next unfortunate event.  I was reminded this week to instead consider everything that could go right.  This shift in thinking can make a big difference.  Stay well!

Sask Health Line - 811
West Central Crisis Center – 1-306-463-6655
West Central Crisis after hours – 1-306-463-1860 (24 hour line)
Heartland Health Region - 1-866-268-9139
Kids Help Phone – 1-800-668-6868
Kerrobert Food Bank - 834-5294 or 834-8292
Kerrobert KidSport – 834-2344
Kerrobert Handibus – 834-7464
Recreation on call phone – 834-8355

Bobbi Hebron
Recreation Director