Edmonton prepares to reopen recreation facilities, city-owned attractions

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney announces the province’s “open for summer” plan; a three-step approach that will relax most COVID-19 health restrictions.

As Alberta moves into Stage 2 of the COVID-19 Open for Summer plan, the City of Edmonton is getting ready to reopen its recreation facilities and city-owned attractions. The city is also looking ahead to Stage 3, with Canada Day celebrations in mind.

A phased reopening will begin on Thursday when Stage 2 of the province’s plan comes into effect.

“We are pleased to begin reopening our services and facilities that support the mental and physical well-being of Edmontonians,” Roger Jevne, the manager of the Community and Recreation Facilities Branch said.

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On that day, Clareview, Commonwealth, Terwillegar and The Meadows will reopen including fitness centres and gyms for individuals and fitness programs.

The Meadows spray park will also reopen between June 10 and 13.

Kinsmen Sports Centre will reopen for individual use of the fitness centre and fieldhouse, while aquatic centre use will continue to be only for groups.

Registration for timed entry into those facilities will open on June 9 through the city’s website.

Indoor spaces at the Edmonton Valley Zoo will reopen on Thursday as well.

The Muttart Conservatory was closed for rehabilitation work and then as part of public health guidelines; it will reopen on Friday.

Admission can be booked on the city’s website.

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The week of June 14 will see several other facilities reopen.

Queen Elizabeth, Fred Broadstock and the Oliver outdoor pools will open for the season and the aquatic centre at the Kinsmen will be available for individual use.

St. Francis Xavier Sports Centre will open for sport user groups as well as individual and group personal training, based on demand.

Commonwealth Stadium and Clarke Stadium will also reopen.

On June 15, the City Hall Fountain will reopen.

Registration for summer day camps is now open and camps will begin on July 5, pending the start date for Stage 3 of the province’s reopening plan.

Summer programming — also known as the green shacks — will reopen on July 12 and will run until Aug. 7.

“We will stay vigilant in following public health orders through June, but we are excited that when we move into Stage 3, likely sometime in July, we can return to providing programs and services that start to rebuild the social connections we’ve all been missing,” Jevne said.

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The city is still working on a plan for Canada Day fireworks and expects to release a plan in mid-June.

City manager Andre Corbould said Tuesday that fireworks will be held on July 1 if the province has moved into Stage 3 of its Open for Summer plan by then.

Corbould said Canada Day fireworks will be postponed to a later date if the province hasn’t reached the Stage 3 threshold by July 1.

Indoor rental spaces and the Heritage Amphitheatre will be available for bookings June 11.

While these facilities are in the process of reopening, things won’t be totally back to normal just yet. There are a number of COVID-19 safety protocols that will be in place across the city.

All facilities will be limited to 33 per cent of fire code capacity and timed entry slots will be needed to enter all Edmonton facilities.

Face coverings are mandatory at all facilities, including indoor and outdoor spaces at the zoo and at the Heritage Amphitheatre.

Physical distancing will be required at all facilities. People will need to be three metres apart at recreation centres and two metres apart at other facilities. Equipment in fitness centres will also be set three metres apart.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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