Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds gives a prime-time televised address announcing new efforts to combat COVID-19 in the state, on Monday, Nov. 16, 2020, at Iowa PBS, in Johnston, Iowa. Photo Credit: Cecelia Hanley/The Des Moines Register

DES MOINES, Iowa – On Wednesday, Gov. Kim Reynolds modified her public health emergency declaration’s COVID-19 mitigation measures for recreational facilities and fitness centers. Her original declaration, which she announced on Monday, prohibited all group fitness activities. Under the modified declaration they are now allowed under certain conditions.

Except for high school, collegiate, or professional sporting or recreational gatherings, the proclamation only permits sporting and recreational activities when all participants in the gathering—including athletes, coaches, or instructors—maintain six feet of physical distance at all times.  Activities where closer contact is required or reasonably unavoidable, such as a wrestling meet or basketball game, are prohibited. Spectators are also limited at all gatherings to two per athlete and must be social distanced six feet apart. And all participants, except for athletes, must wear masks. These requirements also apply to group classes or activities at fitness centers and gyms. 

The proclamation does not change any measures in place for high school-sponsored, collegiate, or professional sporting or recreational activities. High school sports and extracurricular activities continue to be permitted, even where close contact may occur. But spectators at games or events are limited to two per student and must wear a mask.  

The proclamation is effective immediately and continues to expire on December 10, 2020.  

The full proclamation is online in its entirety.

Cross-posted from The Iowa Torch.

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