Guidelines for WPPA's Safe Practice & Play

The Welles Park Parent Association (WPPA) is fully committed to supporting and following the State of Illinois and City of Chicago’s COVID-19 Guidelines. To this end, WPPA has established the following Safe Practice & Play Guidelines which have been issued to the WPPA Community to be implemented for all practices and games. These Guidelines are made part of, and do not replace, the 2021 rules for baseball and softball and may be supplemented, at any time by WPPA.

All WPPA coaches, players, umpires, volunteers, families and members of the WPPA Community are expected to comply with these Guidelines. Failure to comply with these Guidelines may result, at the WPPA Board’s discretion, in disciplinary action including, but not limited to prohibiting individual(s) from participating in WPPA activities.

ALL PARTICIPANTS - HEALTH

  1. All Participants and all members of the WPPA Community (including parents/guardians and spectators) should have their temperature checked at home prior to attending practice or games.
  2. Anyone experiencing COVID19 symptoms are recommended to contact their primary physician for further evaluation and follow all CDC COVID19 guidelines.
  3. Coaches should ask parents and/or players if they are currently exhibiting COVID19 symptoms and if anyone in their household has been diagnosed with the virus since the last team gathering. This request for information can be completed electronically on the day of practice/game.
  4. Coaches must notify league commissioner of any Participant with fever or noticeable COVID 19 symptoms and should isolate them immediately.
  5. All Participants should adhere to 6 foot social distancing practices except when actively participating in field.
  6. ALL PARTICIPANTS ARE REQUIRED TO HAVE A FACE COVERING WITHIN REACH AT ALL TIMES.
  7. ALL PARTICIPANTS ARE REQUIRED TO WEAR FACE COVERINGS EXCEPT WHEN ACTIVELY PARTICIPATING IN THE FIELD OF PLAY.
  8. All Participants should wash hands with soap and water or use hand sanitizer before participating. All Participants should bring their own hand sanitizer and sanitize regularly.
  9. All participants should bring their own source of water and should not share. No team snacks allowed.
  10. No spitting or eating seeds, gum, other similar products in the field or in the dugouts

PRACTICE & GAME - REQUIREMENTS & LIMITATIONS

  1. COACHES SHOULD MONITOR THEIR TEAMS TO ENSURE SOCIAL DISTANCING, FACE COVERING AND THESE GUIDELINES ARE IMPLEMENTED DURING PRACTICES & GAMES.
  2. Teams may practice and play games as a full team.
  3. COACHES ARE REQUIRED TO KEEP AN ATTENDANCE LOG OF ALL PARTICIPANTS FOR EVERY PRACTICE AND GAME.
    a. League commissioners to provide form of WPPA log to coaches.
    b. Coaches are required to submit practice and game attendance log to respective league commissioner upon request.
    c. League shall keep an attendance log of all WPPA umpires for each game.
  4. All practices and games are required to be scheduled in advance and assigned by official WPPA league commissioner. No impromptu practices for teams shall be allowed.
  5. Practices and games should be staggered and scheduled with a minimum of 15 minutes between practice and game times to minimize contact with other teams.
  6. Practice Time Arrival: Participants should not arrive to the fields more than 5 minutes before assigned practice time.
  7. Game Time Arrival: Participants should not arrive to the fields more than 15 minutes before assigned game time.
  8. Game Start Time and Conclusion (all leagues except Rookie):  All games are limited to 2 hours with a hard stop.  The 2 hour time limit starts at the scheduled game time, not when the game actually begins.  No new inning can start after 1 hour and 45 minutes from the scheduled start time.   EXCEPTION - if the game is the last scheduled game on the field for the day, the game can go to the full 2 hour and 30 minute consistent with the WPPA rulebook.
  9. Games Start Time and Conclusion (Rookie league):  All games have a hard stop of 90 minutes from their scheduled start time.
  10. Coaches should conclude practice promptly at their end time to allow for all Participants and members of the WPPA Community to leave area before next team arrives.
  11. Participants should not congregate in common areas or parking lot following practices and games.
  12. All practices should be contactless between Participants.
  13. No touch rule – players should refrain from high fives, handshake lines, celebrations, and other physical contact with coaches, teammates & opposing team. A “tip the cap” can be used following the practice or game in lieu of a handshake line or all-hands huddle.
  14. Full Teams should not gather in the dugouts. Coaches and players can utilize dugouts so long as 6 foot social distancing measures can be achieved and maintained.
  15. To practice social distance guidelines players are permitted to sit/stand in area behind or near dugouts. Players can bring own chairs and set up outside of dugout.

SPECTATORS – BEST PRACTICE GUIDELINES

  1. Parents/guardians or other members of the WPPA Community are discouraged from attending practices. Anyone who attends should maintain
    a. 6 foot social distance from others outside own household, and
    b. 30 feet of social distance from team practice.
  2. Spectators attending games should adhere to 6 foot social distancing guidelines from other spectators outside own household.
  3. Spectators are encouraged to wear face coverings at all times and are required to wear face coverings in accordance with the City of Chicago guidelines.
  4. Spectators are not permitted in the areas behind home plate, around the dugouts or in seating located in close proximity to dugouts or other designated areas.
  5. Spectators are encouraged to bring their own chairs and seating.
  6. Spectators should sit or stand in the outfield out-of-play foul territory located beyond 1st and 3rd base.

EQUIPMENT – BEST PRACTICE GUIDELINES

  1. Participant’s equipment should be separated by at least 6 feet from other Participants’ equipment in the area outside of the dugout along their side of the field.
  2. Participants should use only their own equipment as much as practical.
  3. Shared team equipment should be wiped down between uses (excluding softballs & baseballs).Teams are encouraged to use their own supply of baseballs/softballs when pitching.

WPPA UMPIRES – GUIDELINES

  1. WPPA UMPIRES ARE REQUIRED TO WEAR FACE COVERINGS EXCEPT WHEN ACTIVELY PARTICIPATING IN THE FIELD OF PLAY.
  2. WPPA UMPIRES ARE REQUIRED TO HAVE A FACE COVERING WITHIN REACH AT ALL TIMES.
  3. WPPA UMPIRES ARE REQUIRED TO STAND BEHIND PITCHER TO CALL BALLS & STRIKES.
  4. WPPA Umpires should observe 6 foot social distance guidelines from all Participants including during pre-game meeting with coaches.

Any question or concerns on these guidelines should be directed to the WPPA President at president@wppachicago.org.

APPROVED: April 1, 2021