Spectators attending Ottawa High School athletic events will be limited this fall, OHS officials said.
"In an effort to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, Frontier League schools have agreed to a basic framework that establishes how many spectators will be allowed at each event," OHS Athletic Director Shawn Phillips said. "Please note that every county is different and the number of spectators will vary between OHS and other schools."
Steve Grogan Stadium will accommodate 135 home spectators and 90 visitors. The soccer stadium is limited to 90 spectators each for the home and visitor teams. Volleyball will seat 90 spectators. The amount per team will vary depending on the match format for the evening, Phillips said.
"All spectators will be required to wear masks into all stadiums and/or complexes," Phillips said. "Masks should be worn at all times that a social distancing of 6 feet cannot be maintained while in the stands, restrooms, concession stand area or any other areas within the stadium/complex."
Phillips added fans may be subject to temperature checks and no one with a 100.4 degree or higher temperature will be allowed in.
"Once the event is concluded, we ask all spectators to leave the stadium expeditiously and not gather on the field or anywhere else in the stadium to wait on athletes," Phillips said. "We ask that you wait in your vehicle for your athlete if needed."
For volleyball, parents are asked to stay for their child’s competition only when their are multiple levels (freshmen, junior varsity and varsity), Phillips said.
Participants will be limited to a maximum of four spectators per event, Phillips said.
"This number could decrease however, depending on the specific restrictions put in place by the state or local health departments in whichever county the event is taking place in, and/or stadium/complex capacity numbers of the host school while still maintaining social distancing," Phillips said. "For away games, the host school will determine their visitor seating capacity and will communicate with the visiting school so they can determine how many spectators (up to four) will be allowed to attend. For most venues, the visiting section will most likely be less than the four allotted tickets."
Tickets will be issued by each individual school to all active rostered participants, Phillips said.
"It is the responsibility of the participant and his/her family to keep track of these tickets for the duration of the season as they will be needed for admittance to subsequent events," Phillips said. "General admission tickets will not be sold to the public at the gate. Only spectators with a school issued ticket for that specific event listed on the ticket, will be admitted."
Only spectators with participants on the active roster for that night and a school-issued ticket will be admitted to the event, Phillips said.
"This could change weekly," he said. "For away games, spectators need to check with their participant to ensure they are on the active travel roster for that week’s event and that they will be traveling with the team that week. If they are not on the active travel roster for that week, admittance at the event will be refused even with a ticket."
Tickets may only be used for the specific event that is listed on the ticket, Phillip said. A ticket marked FOOTBALL can’t be used for any other event. Gate prices are $5 for adults and $4 for students, payable at the gate when tickets are shown to gate personnel.
Other participants such as cheerleaders, dance team and band members, etc., also will receive four tickets, Phillips said.
"BAND, CHEER and DANCE" tickets may only be used at home football games unless otherwise specified, he said.
"For band and dance team members, once their performance is finished for the night, we urge those in attendance for that specific performance to leave the stadium/complex for the night to help with social distancing space," Phillips said. "Band students will perform the national anthem before each football game. Parents of band members will have the opportunity to meet outside the stadium in the parking lot and walk down to the field and watch their child's performance from the track area. After the performance, parents will leave the stadium unless they have a ticket for that game."
The dance team will perform at halftime of football games, Phillips said. Parents of the dance team also will meet in the parking lot just before halftime and will go down to the track to watch the dance performance.
After the performance is over, parents will need to leave the venue unless they have a ticket for that game, he added.
If there are multiple events, the gym or bleachers will be cleared to allow new people to enter to watch their child, Phillips said.
"The only way someone may stay for the next game is if they have a ticket to enter that particular game," he said. "Everyone else is asked to go home after their child's event. This process is in place to give more people the ability to watch their particular student play."
Girls golf, cross country and girls tennis will not be issued tickets for their events, Phillips said.
"These policies could change to be more or less stringent as the year progresses," he said. "We will let you know if these changes occur. Thank you for your patience and understanding. We look forward to seeing our Cyclones in action once again."