Professional sports leagues are still on hold, but there is some hope for sports amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic - Massachusetts golf courses are permitted to open immediately.
Massachusetts was the last state to announce a date for golf courses to re-open, and there had been a large public outcry.
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There will be considerable restrictions on courses and players, per the release from Mass Golf, which reads in part:
"Golf courses are not essential businesses and cannot have employees working on-premise. Notwithstanding this restriction, essential services, such as groundskeeping to avoid hazardous conditions and security, provided by employees, contractors, or vendors are permitted. Private operator of courses may permit individuals access to the property so long as there are no gatherings of any kind, appropriate social distancing of six feet between individuals is strictly followed, and the business operator and golfers abide by the specific guidelines for golf courses.
Municipalities may decide to open municipal courses under these guidelines, if they so choose."
No golf carts, rental clubs, or caddies will be allowed. Practice areas such as driving ranges, chipping areas and putting greens will be closed, as will other facilities like pro shops, clubhouses, restaurants and locker rooms. All staff must wear face coverings at all times.
Per Mass Golf, groups will be limited to no more than four golfers at a time, and social distancing must be observed. Ball washers must be covered or removed, while bunker rakes will also be removed.
Tee times will be 15 minutes apart, and golfers must stay in their car until 15 minutes before their tee time, and they must return to their car immediately following their round.
For a complete list of guidelines and restrictions, check out the Mass Golf website.
Massachusetts golf courses can open immediately; here are the guidelines originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston