The return of sports in the Golden Isles will be delayed a bit longer.
The Glynn County Finance Committee is set to recommend the cancellation of the county’s summer baseball and softball programs at its next meeting on May 26.
“If the finance committee approves them, which I anticipate that they will, then it will go to the next board of commissioners meeting, which I think is June 4,” said Glynn County Recreation and Parks Director Lisa Gurganus. “So the official cancellation that would come through the board would on that date.”
Coming off the COVID-19 related cancellations of all Glynn County Schools athletics, as well as the county’s spring soccer and track programs, the hope was the baseball and softball seasons would give the children in the county an athletic outlet.
Following registration in January, the county normally forms its baseball and softball teams in February before beginning practice in early March for a season that ends around mid-May.
But the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in Gov. Brian Kemp issuing a statewide Public Health State of Emergency on March 14 with health professionals recommending residents keep at least six-feet away from anyone not living in the same household.
“While softball and baseball are certainly easier to be socially distant in nature, you’re still talking about having 12 or 13 kids on the field, and the interaction of pitchers, and batters, and runners, and that sort of thing.
“We knew that the earliest that we could try to get something going was early June, and you don’t know if the governor is going to extend that order or not, so our window of time was just kind of running out.”
The Glynn County Recreation and Parks Department sent out an informal survey to its registered participants to gauge interest in a late season running from mid-May through the last week of June. Gurganus estimated about 40 percent responded to the survey with 85 percent supporting the idea, but most also said obligations in July would make it difficult to commit past that point.
However, with the executive order now extended through June 12, it became impossible to thread the needle.
“We were hoping that we could do something to get the kids out playing,” Gurganus said. “It’s been disappointing for our staff to come to the realization that this is kind of where we are.”
But there is still hope for fall sports. The Glynn County Recreation and Parks Department plans to open registration for football, soccer and cheerleading July 1.
Anyone who paid registration fees for cancelled sports can shift the funds toward a future sport over next nine to 10 months, or they can contact GCRPD to request a refund.