Club Update: June 19, 2020

Dear Member,

This is your Captain’s log update for June 19, 2020. Reporting from the (not-so remote) bridge of The Skating Club of Boston. As I mentioned last week, and the week before that, the pandemic is not over. It continues to be up to all of us to now manage our lives with the added knowledge and guidelines we have been given for how to keep ourselves safe. The Club will continue to remain vigilant and do its part. Please count on that.

End of the Season
The Club season ends on Saturday, and what a season it has been! Congratulations to everyone for bearing with the Club and supporting our community this far through the pandemic. It is certainly not what any of us expected, but we have done well! If Ben Wright were still with us, he would already be adding these past few months as a very significant event in the Club’s written record. I think that will eventually happen, but we still need to see where this all leads us, and just how long the pandemic will last. It’s encouraging to see the state’s numbers still improving. I think it is a good indicator that taking all these precautions actually work and mean something for our safety. The rising number of cases in states less conservative in their precautions than Massachusetts would seem to support this same conclusion. For us, this means the Club will be staying its current course through next week and into the start of summer.

Summer Ice
The summer season begins next week! Weeks one and two have been closed for registration, and if you are interested in skating during those weeks, please call the office on the morning of the day you want to skate to see what might be available for ice time. Registration for week number three closes at midnight this Sunday, June 21st. Registration for weeks four through nine remain open, but all sessions are filling up very quickly. If you can’t find space on a session you want, be sure to add your name to the waiting list. If all continues to go well with our new guidelines for operation, we will slowly increase the capacity for skaters on each session. We just need to be sure that it has become normalized behavior to consistently follow all established guidelines. If we have additional space on a session, we will call the names on the waiting list in the order of when they were added.

Ice Credit Requests for this Season
As a very final reminder, with the end of the current season, the Club’s fiscal year also ends on June 30, 2020. What that means for the Club’s finance department is that they need to close out our books for the fiscal year to begin preparing our numbers for the Club audit. We need our numbers to be accurate and timely, which means we need to apply all requested credits for this season’s contracted ice by June 20th. That is tomorrow. If you are seeking a credit for unused ice due to the Club being closed from March 16 – June 20, 2020, you must request it now at billing@scboston.org. We have to close the books for this fiscal year, and it is not appropriate to be asking for credits after the season has concluded. We are happy to offer the credits, of course. We only ask that you do it in a timely fashion and by tomorrow. After June 20, 2020, any unpaid ice will become officially overdue.

New Ice Contracting Options
The Club is introducing two new contracting options for the fall/winter/spring season. In addition to our ongoing seasonal contract, we have introduced a new premium contract and a platinum contract option. Each offers more options and added flexibility, including cancellation, which is something the Club’s members have long sought. A summary of the new contracts can be found here. They will also be posted on the Club’s website very shortly.

Fall Ice Schedule
We have been working on this schedule for some time now. It’s been no small task and many people have been involved in planning the ice for the many groups that the Club serves. We are formatting it for release so that members can begin planning for the new season in Norwood. I know it is not even officially summer yet, but with the school year now over, families are already looking ahead to the fall. Who said that time doesn’t move fast?! While most elements of the schedule have been locked down, further tweaks of some off-season weekend and afternoon ice may still occur once published. Those updates would in no way affect member contracting plans for the season.

The Next 100 Years Capital Campaign
The Club’s Campaign Director, Deb Ianno, sent an email earlier this week asking every member to get involved with The Next 100 Years campaign to finish the final phase of financing for the new facility. Deb echoed some of my own thoughts that I shared with the Club membership during the annual meeting. We have the opportunity to be the shoulders on which the next generation of the Club’s members will stand, just as we have all stood on the shoulders of those who built the Club’s current home in 1938. It is no small thing for a skating club to own its own facility. Of the more than 765 member clubs in U.S. Figure Skating, only three own their own facility. Only one of all these clubs is undertaking to build a facility that is best-in-class for the next several generations of skaters and that will reshape the face of skating in the United States for decades to come. That is us, The Skating Club of Boston. That is our commitment to excellence. We are asking the membership to close the gap for 1.5% of the total financing for the project. That’s the equivalent of each Club member donating and naming 3 seats in the new Performance Center. That’s all it will take to get this done. And donations of 3 seats or more, can be paid over the next 5 years. I am asking everyone to please join me in donating. If I didn’t believe in the importance and significance of what the Club is doing for both today’s and tomorrow’s members, I would not have made my own commitment. Visit thenext100years.org/seatcampaign and help us get this done today.

What’s Next?
I have the same sage advice from last week to continue being smart and staying smart. At 1240 Soldiers Field Road, I want to thank every member and coach for a very good week. If next week goes as well, I think our next step will be to allow skaters to skate without masks, likely as part of the state’s Phase III plan. But we would still require masks of coaches and staff at all times, and of skaters when off the ice. After that, our goal will be to slowly increase the number of skaters on the ice to see if we can eventually meet all demand. The next step, if all still goes well, we will look at allowing parents and chaperones into the facility. But in the near term, we want to prioritize access for the Club’s skaters.

It bears repeating that we could have up to a whole year of needing to act smart in and outside the rink. Because what we do outside of the Club now affects what we all do inside the Club. Please be safe and conscientious everywhere you go. We want every single member to stay well. We also want the Club to stay open and to fulfill its essential purpose of providing joy and recreation and community to all our members. The pandemic is not over. We’ve got a good thing going with the Club’s re-opening, and it is up to all of us to keep it that way. Please be patient. With the Club, and with your own lives. Navigating the pandemic is a marathon, and a marathon is not an easy race to run. But I am confident that we as a Club can win the race.

The finish line is ours to own!

Sincerely,

Doug Zeghibe
Executive Director