Oceanside Minor Baseball, along with other sports groups and clubs, are postponing spring training, events and games due to the COVID-19 global pandemic. (File photo)

COVID-19: Waiting game for PQB sports groups, teams

Organizations still gauging whether to postpone events

Sports are playing a waiting game.

Parksville Qualicum Beach and other communities across the province and Canada have seen sports events and programs cancelled due to the health risk posed by the COVID-19 global pandemic.

Organizers and clubs are still keeping their fingers crossed. They are closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation and are holding back decisions on whether to cancel their scheduled competitions and events.

The Oceanside Generals of the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League are scheduled to hold a camp on April 24-26. According to general manager Andrew Riddell at this time Hockey Canada has cancelled everything including hockey camps to keep everyone safe.

“It is unknown the length of time that the cancellation of team events will occur for,” said Riddell in the notice that he sent out to the public.

“However, nothing can move forward until we all recover from the difficult times we’re faced with, and the cancellation of events is lifted by Hockey Canada.”

READ MORE: List of postponed/cancelled events in the Parksville Qualicum Beach area

Riddell said with COVID-19 concerns constantly evolving, they will continue to monitor all government decisions regarding closures.

The club is looking at other possible dates if things doesn’t change in the next couple of weeks.

“A determination on our camp will be re-evaluated at the start of April,” said Riddell.

Another popular event that’s also in danger of not happening is the Mother’s Day 5K/10K Run in May.

The Oceanside Running Club Association is paying close attention to the updates provided by provincial and federal agencies responsible for public safety.

Although the event is still more than a month away, the race committee and association are still discussing whether to proceed with the event. They plan to make a decision beginning of April and will notify all registered participants by email.

Its popular Learn to Run Program, which has attracted more than 70 participants has been cancelled.

Although the group runs will no longer take place, Doug Brown, who heads the clinic, has transformed the sessions into an online clinic. Participants are provided with weekly training plans, home work as well as weekly update with training tips and motivational thoughts.

“This does represent a significantly different program than what was offered when participants registered,” said Brown.

“The changes to all our lives have been many since the pandemic, and the best we can do is to adjust accordingly.”

Oceanside Minor Baseball has also cancelled its spring break training camp. It also had to cut short its winter ball sessions.

Baseball BC has suspended all sanctioned in-person baseball activity indefinitely and has instructed all minor baseball associations to support the cancellation of events this spring. They’ve also been advised to prepare for a suspended or cancelled season.

Cascadia Martial Arts holds the Island Open Taekwondo Championships every year at Oceanside Place. It was slated to take place on April 25 but the club had to pull the plug.

Brett Fee, one of the club instructors and co-owners of Cascadia, said in his notice “it is with great caution and a heavy heart that we must postpone the 2020 Island Open until later this year.

The club now plans to hold a smaller scale event call the Cascadia Invitational Taekwondo Championships. The date is yet to be determined.

“As one of the leaders in the martial arts community here on the Island, we need to provide something for our athletes to look forward during this time of uncertainty,” Fee said.

“The athletes have worked so hard and the parents and family members have been such amazing supporters, it’s important that they eventually, hopefully sooner rather than later, get the opportunity to showcase their skills.”

Michael.Briones@pqbnews.com

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