EAU CLAIRE — The city of Eau Claire recently announced new COVID-19 safety protocols for Hobbs Ice Center, 915 Menomonie St.

While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continues to recommend universal masking in all indoor settings as part of a COVID-19 mitigation strategy, officials from the city’s Community Services Department stated that has the potential to make on-ice competition difficult and to create a burden for participants.

The city issued a news release Friday stating new protocols intended to balance safety concerns and the desire to provide a place for the community to engage in on-ice sports and activities.

During competition/exhibition/practice, participation without a mask is allowed if a player/skater meets the following criteria:

Age 12 and up

• Provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination.

• Provide a negative test result if unvaccinated (test taken within 72 hours of the game).

Under age 12

• Provide a negative COVID-19 test result (test taken within 72 hours of the game).

Skaters who cannot provide either will not be allowed to participate on the ice without a mask.

Skaters and visitors showing symptoms of COVID-19 are asked to stay home and follow guidance for getting tested.

Masks will continue to be required in all common areas off the ice for players and visitors.