GOLF IN CONNECTICUT DURING THE CORONAVIRUS / COVID-19 PANDEMIC
(updated October 7, 2020)
Recognizing that golf is unique as a healthy, outdoor activity where social distancing can easily occur, the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) declared golf courses and driving ranges to be "essential businesses" in Connecticut on March 25, 2020. It has been with much appreciation for Connecticut's leadership, and with a commitment to measures that help prevent the spread of the disease, that Connecticut golfers have been able play golf this spring and early summer while other activities have been suspended.
Social Distancing, the elimination of certain touch points that may be contaminated, and the wearing of facial coverings to prevent the spread of the virus continues to be essential. All leading authorities including the CDC and experts around the world agree - it is the best way to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Please do your part to insure that you and all those around you remain healthy and safe. Please, if you do not feel well - stay home!
Below, in alphabetical order is a listing of the "rules of play" for golf in Connecticut by order of the DECD:
BATHROOMS - Under Connecticut's Phase 1 re-opening on May 20, bathrooms that serve retail (pro shops) and restaurants were allowed to open under certain guidelines. For information on retail go here:
For information on restaurants go here:
For questions related to bathrooms and in particular, Port-o-Potties contact local health officials as regulations may vary locally.
BEVERAGE CARTS - Beverage carts are permitted provided they follow the rules for restaurant.
CADDIES / FORECADDIES - The employment of traditional, bag-carrying caddies is permitted under guidelines approved by the DECD. These guidleines, which can be found through the following link, must be adhered to at all times:
The employment of forecaddies is also permitted. Forecaddies must adhere to social distancing, and are also subject to the same guidelines as bag-carrying caddies.
CAMPS - Per Executive Order EO7PP: "All operations of day camps which were not operating as of May 5, 2020 shall not begin operations until June 22, 2020. This shall apply to all day camps without regard to what entity operates the day camp or whether the day camp is exempt from licensing requirements.” Also, section 8 of the Order prohibits the operation of resident camps.
CLUBHOUSES - Clubhouses may be open for functions and gatherings at 50% capacity and up to 100 people indoors. Retail pro shops, bathrooms and outdoor dining opened under the May 20 - Phase 1 guidelines. Indoor restaurant dining at 75% capacity under the October 8 Phase 3 guidelines.
CLUB STORAGE AND BAG HANDLERS - Club storage and bag service operations at golf courses are permitted. Staff members may assist with club/bag storage under proper CDC guidelines, including sanitization protocols and the frequent washing of hands and/or the use of hand sanitizer as well as the use of facial coverings when social distancing cannot be maintained.
DRINKING WATER - Hand-operated water coolers and jugs remain off-limits and are to remain covered or removed. Bottled water may be distributed, and players should be encouraged to bring their own water or purchase beverages in accordance with the June 17 - Phase 2 guidelines. Water fountain use shall be restricted to water bottle filling stations only. Congregating at water bottle filling stations shall be limited and signage reinforcing the use of water bottle filling stations only must be displayed.
FACIAL COVERINGS / MASKS - So that when it is becomes necessary to use a facial covering (when social distancing is not or can not be maintained), all employees and golfers at any golf course must have a facial covering in their possession at all times. While face masks are not required while playing golf, the use of a face mask is required whenever social distancing can not be maintained.
FLAGSTICKS (and additional items) - Effective June 17, 2020 flagsticks and rakes may be handled, and benches may be used. These items are to be cleaned frequently. Pencils may be distributed, and items previously banned from touching such as ropes and stakes may be handled. Ball-washers, used tee baskets, and hand-operated water coolers and jugs remain off-limits and are to remain covered or removed. Bottled water may be distributed, and players should be encouraged to bring their own water or purchase beverages in accordance with the June 17 - Phase 2 guidelines.
GOLF CARTS - Golf carts must be sanitized after each use, and the following rules apply:
1) members of the same household can share a cart and are not required to wear a facial covering or use a "divider." Members of the same household can alternate as drivers provided both meet all regulations for operating a cart.
2) two people who are not members of the same household may share a cart, however both must wear a facial covering while in the cart and at any time social distancing is not maintained. The driver of the cart must remain the only driver of the cart throughout the round. If a cart is equipped with a "divider" facial coverings are not required except when social distancing can not be maintained. The divider must meet the following description:
The divider must be fitted into the entire area of the cart from the windscreen to the floor to the inside roof, between the seating area and into the back of the cart to provide a complete barrier between the driver and passenger, as well as the equipment of both players. The divider must be fixed and attached, and along with the entire cart, must be sanitized after each use. During each use, the driver of the cart must remain the only driver at all times. Once out of the cart and in open space, the driver and passenger must continue to maintain social distancing at a minimum of 6 feet.
GOLF INSTRUCTION / COACHING / CLUB FITTING - Instruction / coaching / club fitting and clinics with up to a total of 25 participants (including instructors) is permitted. Social distancing required at all times. No exchange or sharing of any items or equipment. For more information go here:
LOCKER ROOMS - In public locker rooms, every other or every third locker must be closed or marked for non-use to enforce 6 foot social distancing requirement. Facilities where lockers are assigned to members are not required to disable lockers but must enforce social distancing requirement. Casual seating other than benches by lockers must be removed or rendered off-limits. Steam rooms and saunas must be closed off or disabled. Showers, except for rinsing before and after any pool activity must be disabled or closed-off. If independent showers are available and used, they must be attended and sanitized between each use.
PAYMENTS AND TRANSACTIONS - No limitations provided transactions comply with June 17 - Phase 2 retail guidelines.
PRO SHOP OPERATIONS - As a retail business, pro shops are permitted to be open with certain restrictions. For information on retail go here:
RESTAURANT OPERATIONS - Indoor dining at 75% capacity. For information on restaurants go here:
SHOTGUN STARTS - Are permitted with no more than 150 people gathered in one location at one time.
SOCIAL DISTANCING - Maintain social distance of at least six feet at all times over the entire property including parking and practice areas. Respect of social distancing applies not only to fellow golfers but also to golf course employees.
STARTING TIME INTERVALS - Must be at least 10-minutes. Players waiting to play must not congregate, and must maintain social distancing at all times.
For more information pertaining to the CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC in Connecticut go to: https://portal.ct.gov/Coronavirus Thank you for following the rules and doing all you can to keep yourself and others healthy and safe.