In the January issue of Recreation Management, Dave Ramon spoke to industry leaders, including Ron Romens, president of CRS, for their insights on business strategies to provide safe recreation opportunities for their patrons.
Keep It Clean, Encourage Distance
Ronald Romens is president of a Wisconsin-based company that provides planning, design and operational services to resorts, aquatics and fitness centers, YMCAs and municipalities. He believes that designs will be affected by the pandemic but added that the rules are still changing. “I would foresee more passive recreation and recreation for individuals/families like trails, disc golf, etc., versus specifically encouraging ‘team’ activities like sport courts. In general, I don’t see outdoor recreation being as affected as indoor recreation. We’ve seen a big uptick on design-and-build of disc golf courses.
“Stringent cleaning regimens instill confidence in visitors, and Romens’ company distributes a low-toxicity disinfectant cleaner that kills bacteria, fungi and viruses, including the virus that causes COVID-19. It’s recommended for use in recreation areas, point-of-sale locations, playgrounds, splash pads, dining surfaces and restrooms. They also distribute a sanitizer, which modifies surfaces to provide long-lasting anti-microbial protection against viruses, bacteria, algae, mold and mildew. Disinfecting with the cleaner and protecting with the sanitizer is the “one-two punch needed for indoor and outdoor environments,” said Romens.
Other helpful product ideas include hand sanitizer stations, neoprene face masks made for water use and water walkers—protective feet coverings made for inflatable aquatic obstacle courses that provide increased protection against transferable bacteria and germs. Inflatable beach tents are another option, which venues can distribute in rows six feet or more apart. “(These) are a great strategy to provide structured traffic patterns and distancing to an unstructured environment while creating a very comfortable, rentable space for families,” said Romens.
Romens offered some safety tips that facility operators might consider, including: create smaller events by limiting guests and breaking into time shifts; display signage; know CDC guidelines and follow them; reduce hours to “one shift”; take temperatures of staff and guests and have a plan for elevated temps; refund seasonal passes and instead allow for daily use; open up in phases and/or zones; set up cashless pay options, including online; remove site furnishings that encourage congregating like picnic tables and benches; utilize floor markers and other site markers. “Things change daily, so over-communicating is the best way to keep in touch with the details, and stay relevant and safe,” added Romens.
Read the full article at Recreation Management.