PLAYERS PLAY - SPECTATORS SPECTATE - RULES OFFICIALS OFFICIATE
Parents and spectators are extremely important to the VCJGA; however, it is up to the hosting golf facility as to whether parents and spectators are permitted on the golf course and whether or not to charge a spectator fee. Spectating in golf may appear different than other sports such as little league, however; we expect spectators to give all players as much space as possible so that they may go about their business without distractions.
PLEASE DO NOT GET INVOLVED WITH THE COMPETITION.
Spectators MUST register in the Golf Shop prior to going on the course. Golf Carts are only available for rent to those with verified Handicap credentials (at option of the golf facility). If you have a handicap (or advancing age), you will need to send an e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) to gain approval to rent a cart the day prior to tournament play.
DUE TO COVID-19, Our Spectator Policy has some important amendments that need your attention:
Policies & Procedures... This updated policy supersedes ANY policy posted on our website.
The VCJGA provides our members and families with tournament programming that is responsible and as safe as possible. Moving forward, we will continue a path of caution with what may be the safest environment in all of athletics, the game golf. It is vital that if anyone is not feeling well, they do not play (or attend) and follow the VCJGA Withdrawal Policy. It is our view that being safe is everyone’s responsibility and we are now implementing the following Policy & Procedure.
The following policy is consistent with the “Back 2 Golf Operations Playbook”, which has been reviewed by the CDC, along with the guidelines and recommendations outlined by the CDC, State and County Health officials. These guidelines are subject to change at any time.
The basics remain the same:
• Wash your hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20-seconds
• Refrain from touching your face
• Wear a mask when in the clubhouse and surrounding areas
• SOCIAL DISTANCING – Keeping at least 6-8 feet apart (approximately 3-steps apart)
These policies are reliant on everyone’s cooperation and support.
FACILITY ARRIVAL - We kindly ask that all players report to Check-In no more than 1-hour prior to your scheduled start time – If you arrive earlier, please wait in your car. If the facility does not have a practice range, Check-In will be no more than 30-minutes prior to your scheduled start time.
• Only the Player will be allowed to Check-In and use the Practice area.
• Players must wear a mask to Check-In and again when reporting to the first tee 5-minutes early for final instructions.
• Social Distancing MUST always be practiced. It is OK to give a friendly reminder to others that may forget.
• Sanitizing station will be made available where appropriate.
• Please follow course signs/instructions carefully.
WHILE PLAYING – Building a new routine
• Players MUST be responsible for bringing their own face coverings and wearing it while at the facility until they begin play on the first hole. Face coverings are recommended, but optional during play. Face coverings MUST be worn when approaching the clubhouse area and scoring area.
• VCJGA Staff, Rules Officials and Volunteers will be required to wear face coverings when in the clubhouse, practice, first tee, scoring area; and when on course giving a ruling to a player or group.
• Sanitary gloves will be worn by VCJGA Staff, Rules Officials and Volunteers when handling items that others may meet. This will also take place during administrative preparation prior to the tournament day.
SPECTATORS – High Expectations. Each course is different.
It is up to each facility whether to permit spectators.
The VCJGA will post this information on the TIP (Tournament Information Page) for each individual event in advance.
It is your responsibility to ascertain and follow this notice. Violators will be asked to leave; and their competitor will be subject to penalty, up to and including disqualification. When Spectators are permitted, they will be responsible that Social Distancing Requirements are met and exceeded, therefore; we will limit the number of people at each tournament.
• When permitted by the golf facility, each Player will be permitted to have ONE family member/grandparent Spectate.
• Spectators will be required to pay any fee required by the facility,
• If a player does not have a Spectator with them, they CANNOT transfer this to another player.
• Spectators MUST walk and remain on the Cart Path (in rough when path is not available).
• Carts will only be available for those with OFFICIAL Handicap credentials (Blue Plaque) ONLY – Plan to walk.
• VCJGA Spectator Policy MUST be adhered to.
• Finally, Social Distancing MUST always be observed.
COURSE SETUP - Expect the Following....
• We will no longer provide the following items on the first tee: pencils, tees, ball markers. Players will need to bring these items with them.
• All bunker rakes will be removed from the golf course. Players can mark, lift, clean, and place their ball within one club length of its original position, no closer to the hole without penalty.
• We encourage all players to smooth the sand with their shoe or club when exiting the bunker.
• Players must not touch or remove the flagstick at any time. Removing the flagstick is a violation of VCJGA policy and may result in a penalty.
• If a stroke is made without the flagstick in the hole, a one-stroke penalty will be assessed to the player for breach of this local rule.
• Scoring will take place in a manner where social distancing can be implemented appropriately. Please follow the Scoring Administrator instructions. We will have players stand a minimum of 8feet apart and verbally attest to their scores.
• Scoreboard may be available next to the scoring table and is always available online and on our phone app.
• Players are asked to refrain from the traditional handshake or hug prior to and after the round.
• Awards will be given only to those at the conclusion of play by division, limited to the award winner and his/her parent in attendance with Social Distancing. If you are done and waiting to see if you earned an award, please wait in your car or completely away from others.
If a player is experiencing a fever, cough, or other symptoms related to COVID-19, they need to stay home. Familiarize yourself and follow best practices issued by the Center for Disease Control (CDC), and state/local governments.
Revised: July 8, 2020
1. Spectators MUST WALK the course and should stay one shot ahead of the group they are following. This allows spectators to follow errant shots and help identify where the ball comes to rest. Spectators are allowed to aid in the search for lost golf balls using care not to improve the lie of the ball. Spectators must keep off tees, fairways and greens - Stay on cart paths. In the absence of cart paths, we ask that spectators stay in the rough away from players.
Please stay off tees, fairways and greens. Remember to keep proper distance/space from all players (75 yards or more is recommended).
Spectators cannot walk with players during tournament play and should make every effort to not disturb ANY of the players.
Keep in mind that in many situations on certain parts of the course, a spectator may not be able to see the shot played nor are they entitled to see every shot played.
2. Spectators as a rule should NOT speak to players. A parent may speak with their child regarding #4 below.
3. Spectators MUST RESPECT all RULES SITUATIONS and NOT attempt to make or give Rulings (or get involved in Rulings) on the Rules of Golf. You will be brought into a situation only if the Rules Official asks you. If you have a question or information, it should be done away from competitors and in a calm manner. USGA Rule 10.2 - A fundamental challenge for the player is deciding the strategy and tactics for his or her play. So there are limits to the advise and other help the player may get during a round.
If the Rules Officials need to change their focus from the players to the spectators, you may be asked to leave the golf course immediately.
4. Spectators are allowed to carry medicine, drinks/snacks for players (not equipment - Do not caddie, handle or go through a player’s equipment/bag/hand cart).
5. Absolutely no alcohol or smoking when spectating.
For your personal safety, we ask you exercise caution at all times.
Golf balls can come from any direction at any time and hit you.
When inclement weather moves in to the area, the VCJGA will suspend play by sounding air-horns.
Accordingly, you should seek shelter immediately. The VCJGA and Volunteers will assist in the evacuate players from the course.
Spectators must be aware and move to safety on their own.
The VCJGA may assess a penalty to the player based on the severity of the spectator violation. Continuous conversations with player(s) are not appropriate. If a serious breach has occurred, the spectator, without warning, may be asked to leave the golf course, the facility, or the spectator may not be permitted to attend other VCJGA tournaments.
STRICT RULES ON ADVICE
Please note that parents, guardians and spectators agree to let participants compete without giving any advice or counsel to them during the stipulated round (USGA Rule 10.2) knowing that a violation may cause a two-stroke penalty against their participant without warning.
USGA Rules of Golf - Definition of Advice:
“Any verbal comment or action (such as showing what club was just used to make a stroke) that is intended to influence a player in:
Choosing a club,
Making a stroke, or
Deciding how to play during a hole or round.
But advice does not include public information, such as:
The location of things on the course such as the hole, the putting green, the fairway, penalty areas, bunkers, or another player's ball,
The distance from one point to another, or
Thank you in advance for your cooperation