skip navigation

Commissioner's Corner: Return to Play - Behind the Scenes

By Debbie Moon, 08/08/20, 5:15PM EDT


CBHL Family, 

The Chesapeake Bay Hockey League (CBHL) is continuing to work closely with the Potomac Valley Amateur Hockey Association (PVAHA) and USA Hockey to develop a safe and orderly return to hockey.  Here is an update on where we are.  

A reminder, CBHL is a Tier II league under the local USA Hockey governing body, PVAHA. PVAHA is the sanctioned Affiliate of USA Hockey, operating in the States of Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia. 

On March 13, PVAHA issued a statement regarding the 2019-2020 USA Hockey National tournaments being cancelled due to COVID-19. 

March 23, PVAHA announced that tryouts were being postponed and “all ice rinks within PVAHA are currently closed based on state or local restrictions.”

We spent from April to June without on ice hockey. 

On June 10, PVAHA releases a statement on Virginia ice rinks opening.

On June 22, PVAHA released a statement on try-outs and player contracts/agreements.

On July 31, PVAHA released a statement on USA Hockey rosters and USA Hockey sanctioned tournaments. 

The PVAHA does not direct or control the opening or operations of rink facilities. Rink facilities are required to follow Federal, state, and local executive orders as well as Department of Health mandates. 

  • The PVAHA sanctions certain ice hockey activities managed by registered member Associations.
  • Sanctioning requires compliance with current federal, state, and local governmental and Health Department regulations in order to be eligible to host USA Hockey sanctioned activities.
  • Participants should note that not all ice hockey activities occurring in an ice rink facility are under the auspices of the PVAHA and USA Hockey and, therefore may not be PVAHA / USA Hockey sanctioned events. Ice Rinks may very well comply with federal, state, and local governmental requirements while operating programs outside the jurisdiction of the PVAHA and USA Hockey.
  • Each rink facility should communicate its operating policies and participation procedures with the public entering its facility. This communication may include health screenings before entry, sanitization protocols, maximum occupancy in the facility, face mask requirements for everyone entering the facility, etc.
  • Participants should be aware of the rink facility’s policies, procedures, and operating protocols prior to arriving at the facility.

The 2020-2021 Season and its format is being discussed at length. Everyday there are numerous calls, video conferences, emails, all to get the season started. 

The PVAHA, the CBHL Executive Staff and the CBHL clubs continue to work with the state governments, state athletic associations, and everyone that puts the guidelines in place for a safe return to play. Much of the discussion involves the education of how the rinks and associations have instilled protocol and policies under the guidelines of USA Hockey, the CDC, etc. It is an overwhelming process.

In conjunction with return to play, we are working on points of emphasis for players, coaches, team managers, and volunteers. We are putting together a program preparation plan that outlines steps for the resumption of activities.

As soon as we know, you will know. 

In the meantime, everyone in the community can help bring competitive youth ice hockey back by consistently wearing masks in public, social distancing, practicing good hand hygiene, emphasizing the importance of disclosing exposures with parents and athletes, avoiding congregating in crowds, including informal gatherings, and avoiding traveling with teams to other areas that aren’t practicing similar measures to control the virus. These measures will help decrease the virus in the community and allow all of us to get back to the game we love.