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West Hartford Leisure Services Cancels Spring Programs

Spring sports have been canceled and permits have been revoked for all West Hartford athletic fields like these soccer fields at Goodrich. Photo credit: John Lyons (we-ha.com file photo)

Youth league events, as well as other programs, have been officially canceled through the middle of June amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

By Ronni Newton

Spring youth sports and other programs organized by West Hartford Leisure Services have officially been canceled for 2020 to prevent the spread of COVID-19, Director of Leisure Services Helen Rubino-Turco said Monday.

The cancellation impacts the April Vacation Camps and other spring activities detailed in the West Hartford Leisure Services Spring/Summer 2020 catalogue, which had already been mailed to households throughout town by the time the decision was made. No decision has been at this time made regarding summer programs.

Field permits have been revoked and no new permits will be issued, Rubino-Turco said.

Facility rentals and recreation activities – including for all youth league programs – are canceled through the middle of June, when school was originally scheduled to end. A final date for the end of the current academic year has not been announced amid the closure of schools due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the launch of online learning in West Hartford Public Schools.

Leisure Services Manager Marc Blanchard emailed the All Sports Council members late last week, expressing how sorry he was to have to deliver the message about cancellation of spring programs, which include baseball, softball, lacrosse, field hockey, and soccer for youth, as well as women’s soccer.

“I know all of the hard work all of you put into each and every season,” Blanchard said in his email. “I am confident that all of your programs will weather this storm and return to operations as a soon as possible.”

Leisure Services facilities, including Cornerstone Aquatics Center, Veterans Memorial Rink, Elmwood community Center, the West Hartford and Elmwood senior centers, Rockledge Golf Club, Buena Vista Golf Course, and Westmoor Park’s barnyard remain closed.

Playscapes and basketball courts at municipal and school facilities were also closed last week.

Trails at Westmoor Park remain open, as do town parks, but proper physical distancing is recommended.

“Stay Home. Stay Healthy. Flatten The Curve,” the Leisure Services webpage on the town’s website states.

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