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Parks and rec programs canceled

Winter league basketball and cheerleading programs have been canceled by Danville-Boyle County Parks and Recreation.

Both the Danville and Boyle County school systems had declined parks and rec request to use their gyms for its basketball leagues, said program director Evan Teague on Friday. “Both schools were very apologetic. … It’s their kids too. We completely understand.”

Last year about 400 kids played on dozens of parks and rec kindergarten through high school basketball teams, Teague said.

Not having access to Danville and Boyle County’s gyms due to their strict COVID-19 protocols, Teague said, “We can’t make it work without them. They are a great asset to parks and rec.”

He added, “With everything going on right now, it’s taken a lot for the schools to get their kids back in school.” And they’re paying for special cleaning and disinfecting services every night.

The basketball leagues would have been using the facilities four days a week for practices with hundreds of students participating, and games would have been played from 8 a.m. to about 3 p.m. on Saturdays with families and friends cheering in the bleachers.

He said it’s much more difficult to help keep players and families safe from the virus inside gyms as opposed to outdoor playing fields.

“It’s disappointing for us and the kids as well. It’s unfortunate all the way around.”

Teague added that if life during the pandemic “normalizes” soon, maybe they could arrange to have a modified winter basketball season. “But I think that’s wishful thinking.”