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Black Hawks Present Readiness Plan

By WBH, 10/12/20, 10:30AM CDT

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Key Strategies in Place Ahead of Season Opener

The first game of the 2020/21 Waterloo Black Hawks regular season will be played at Young Arena November 6th; on Monday, the Black Hawks, Black Hawk County Public Health officials, and Waterloo Leisure Services provided the public with the Readiness Plan which will govern all aspects of rink operations on game night.

“There are many things which will be different for all of us this season, but we have used all of the resources available to make the best decisions we can about the situation,” said Black Hawks President of Business Operations Joe Greene.  “Since last March, people have asked us ‘How are you going to play if COVID-19 is still happening?’  Well, COVID-19 is still happening, so we have put a lot of thought into making this work safely.  Safety is our top priority for everyone coming into the building whether they are playing, watching, or working.  However, the most important thing to making this plan successful is having each individual do their part to protect everyone else.”

Under the plan and current City of Waterloo policy, fans will be required to wear face coverings and observe social distancing designations while attending Black Hawks games.  These actions are incorporated in the COVID-19 Readiness Plan’s Fan Code of Conduct, which must be followed.  The ability to have fans at Young Arena is contingent on this Code of Conduct, so failure to observe these guidelines could mean a reduction in the number of fans able to attend or total elimination of fan attendance.

The complete COVID-19 Readiness Plan is available here.  Other key aspects of the document include describing cleaning procedures, outlining changes or adjustments to the fan experience, and providing a sample of the socially distant seating layout within Young Arena’s seating sections.

“The Waterloo Black Hawks designed a plan that prioritizes the safety of all participants and fans,” said Black Hawk County Public Health Director Dr. Nafissa Cisse-Egbuonye.  “They have conferred with Black Hawk County Public Health for the latest CDC and Iowa Department of Public Health COVID-19 guidance.”

“The Young Arena Staff is committed to continuing to work closely with Waterloo Black Hawks staff in a combined effort to safely welcome back Black Hawks players and fans to Young Arena,” said Young Arena Manager Chris Dolan.  “Our staff will continually monitor best COVID-19 practices throughout the season.” 

Policies stated in the COVID-19 Readiness Plan are subject to change based on circumstances related to the pandemic’s development on a local, national, or international scale.  Fans are encouraged to follow the team on social media or this website to receive prompt notice of updates.

While the COVID-19 Readiness plan considers aspects of health and safety related to Young Arena on game nights, it will not answer all questions fans may have, particularly regarding tickets, vouchers, redemption of seats which were purchased but could not be used for games which were cancelled in March or April, the availability of group and other seating options, and more.

“Not all of these questions have been answered yet, but we are continually working on them through the prism of this COVID-19 Readiness Plan and coming to conclusions on these issues and others so that everyone can be informed,” said Greene.  “There are many individualized situations, and so we ask for – and very much thank everyone for – continued patience.”

A page updating this type of information can be found at waterlooblackhawks.com/covid19guidelines and will continue to offer new ticket and game policy details in the weeks ahead.  For immediate questions regarding tickets please email parish@waterlooblackhawks.com.

Also on Monday, the Black Hawks announced that single-game tickets for games against the Omaha Lancers on November 6th and 7th will go on sale Monday, November 2nd.  At this time, the Black Hawks anticipate comparable, limited single-game ticket-buying windows ahead of future games in order to effectively adjust to any changes in building capacity.  Details about the availability of tickets for later games on the 2020/21 home schedule will be released in the future.