MAPLEWOOD, NJ — Governor Phil Murphy recently announced that some indoor and contact would be allowed to take place this winter.

Executive Order 187, which Murphy signed Monday, gave the green light for the N.J. Dept. of Health (NJDOH) and the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA) to update their guidelines for winter sports. The list of sports that will now be permitted includes basketball, wrestling, cheerleading and group dance. As with indoor dining, indoor sports competitions and practices will be limited to 25% capacity of the room.

The South Orange Maplewood School District Athletic Director Ken Mullen had no comment on the status of winter sports at Columbia High School this year.

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The NJDOH has laid out additional safety precautions for indoor sports which are considered “medium risk” or “high risk.” They include making sure there is enough room for teams to be properly distanced and limiting people in the restrooms at once to prevent overcrowding. The NJDOH also set out detailed instructions for HVAC operations, the HVAC should run for two hours before and after each game or practice and run continuously while the building is being occupied. The two team limit on competitions is still in effect but may change according to the NJSIAA website.

The NJSIAA has laid out the schedule for winter sports. Practices can begin December 3 and the season will begin December 21 and ending February 3. The post-season will run from February 5-17. Teams will be allowed to compete in a maximum of 15 regular season games and one pre-season scrimmage. The ban on out-of-state competitions has not been lifted.

 

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