Recreation Centers of Sun City cardholders can now take their guests to some outdoor activities following action by the rec centers board.
RCSC leaders had closed all facilities — indoor and outdoor — to guests last year at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. But management officials proposed opening some outdoor activities to guests and the board agreed.
After some discussion in the March 25 board meeting, the guest restriction was lifted beginning April 5. However, it is not for all outdoor activities.
Chris Herring, RCSC operations director, said guests escorted by cardholders will be welcomed at the bocce courts, fishing, horseshoes, mini golf, pickleball, softball, tennis and walking in the outdoor common areas.
“Guest passed will be needed in the areas where they are normally required,” he said.
The revision for guests does not include the fitness centers, pools, walking pools and spas, Mr. Herring explained.
Sun City residents were mixed in their reactions to the decision.
“I agree with the decision to allow guests for outdoor activities,’ Randy Asendorf stated in an email. “I also think we are approaching the time when RCSC can consider allowing guests for indoor activities.”
He believes summer would be a good time to experiment with this since there are fewer residents in the community. He suggests opening indoor activities at the beginning of June.
Other residents are opposed to lifting COVID restrictions in any way.
“Under no circumstances should we be lifting the restrictions!,” Gene Ambroson stated in an email. “The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and a host of other agencies and experts are ringing the alarm bell for those states, counties and municipalities, pleading we are not quite ready to lift the restrictions.”
He believes politicians are not listening to the scientific community.
“Now is not the time to drop all COVID-19 restrictions, period!” Joan Adair stated in an email. “The CDC is warning that the opening that the many red states is just going to allow the virus to spread and our COVID cases will rise!”
Dana Belzner stated in an email she would rather stick to restrictions until the majority of people are vaccinated.
Pat Dilmore stated in an email some residents would love to see some outdoor activities open to guests.
“We will have six family members here in April — ages in 20s to 50s,” she stated. “Putt putt is always a favorite. We have all had our COVID shots, but I feel it is too soon to let our guard down.”
Suzy Hallock-Bannigan said she agreed with guest policy revisions, but believes the wisest course of action is to follow the CDC guidelines as the new variants seem to have a ferocity of their own.
“None of us want to lose family members or friends we love,” she stated in an email. “We are all eager for this pan-damn-ick to end, and I am not known for my eternal patience, but I think we need just a little more time.”
Mr. Herring’s original proposal for revisions was to open the activities to guests beginning Saturday, May 1. But Michael Ege, RCSC board member, asked if it were possible to allow guests sooner. Mr. Herring said the proposed May 1 opening was designed to allow the proposal to go through the board’s three reading cycle and to allow staff time to make changes to the RCSC portal.
However, after further discussion, Mr. Herring said the work on the portal could be accomplished by April 5.
“It didn’t take three motions to close the facilities so why should it take three motions to open them?” Steve Collins, RCSC board member, asked.
Rich Hoffer, RCSC board member, said he would not support the motion unless it included the May 1 opening date. However, he relented to April 5 when Mr. Herring assured him the changes to the portal could be accomplished by then.
After approving the opening, the board passed a motion waiving the second and third readings of the motion to make it official on the March 25 passage.