Outdoor Youth Sports to Return to NYC Parks

Mayor Bill de Blasio. Image credit: CityLand

Leagues will be issues permits with regulations. On August 28, 2020, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that NYC Parks will resume permitting outdoor youth sports on City athletic fields starting September 15, 2020. City athletic fields have been operating throughout the COVID-19 pandemic with social distancing measures in place, but beginning on September 15, 2020, youth sports leagues will be issued permits to use the fields for organized outdoor play. Sports such as baseball, softball, and soccer will resume, but indoor sports such as swimming will still not be permitted.

All leagues who are issued a permit must enforce the following regulations, as stated in the press release:

– Face coverings must be worn by all coaches, staff, spectators, and players on the sidelines; players are encouraged to wear while playing if possible

– Social distancing must always be practiced by all when not active in game play

– Spectators must be limited to two per player

– All must leave the field post game, there shall be no congregating

NYC Parks staff members will be monitoring league activities, and if a team accumulates three violations, NYC Parks will revoke that league’s permits. Additionally, if the City’s percentage of positive COVID-19 tests exceeds three percent positivity, all permits will be suspended.

Mayor de Blasio stated, “Our children have been through so much this year and have been yearning for more outdoor play. Thankfully we’re continuing to see improvement in beating back this disease, and can safely permit youth sports this fall. We’ll continue to monitor our progress and put health and safety first.”

Council Member Peter Koo, Chair of the Committee on Parks and Recreation, said, “Our city’s sports leagues, parents, youth, and elected officials have been asking for guidance for when permitting will restart since the beginning of summer, so this is great news for those leagues who have been sitting on the sidelines for too long. Our youth leagues have been hit particularly hard by the lack outdoor field access, and with proper safety precautions in place, this plan to restart permitting will help put our youth athletes on a path toward normalcy.”

By: Victoria Agosta (Victoria is the CityLaw intern and a New York Law School student, Class of 2022.)


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.