COVID Policy

Our COVID precautions will remain largely the same as last year, with a few changes noted in bold:

  • Everyone is expected to be vaccinated and have received their recommended number of booster shots (2 boosters for those 50 or older and those who are moderately or severely immunocompromised; otherwise, 1 booster).

  • Masks fully covering the mouth and nose will be required at all times. Surgical masks will be available if anyone forgets to bring one.

  • Hand sanitizer will be available.

  • Everyone must be tested and show a negative test result before entering the rehearsal space. We recommend testing the day of rehearsal, but we will also accept test results from the day before. You may either test at home and take a photo of the negative result to show a Board member upon arrival, or you may test on-site before rehearsal begins.

  • The board will purchase a limited number of test kits to have available at rehearsal. Please see our more comprehensive policy and recommendations on test kits below.

  • Everyone will complete an attestation form prior to each rehearsal to be completed no later than 1 PM on the day of rehearsal. Attestation forms can also be submitted the evening prior to rehearsal. (If circumstances on the form have changed since submission, you may resubmit an updated form or contact a member of the COVID subcommittee.)

  • Physical distancing will be required.

  • Rehearsals will last two hours with a short break. (No refreshments, just a time to stretch your legs or use the facilities.)

  • We'll use the air filters and windows in Parker Hall to ensure adequate ventilation.

  • Anyone with any symptoms should stay home. 

  • Anyone who finds out that they've been exposed to COVID should notify me or a member of the COVID subcommittee and stay home from rehearsal that week.

  • Anyone who tests positive should stay home and contact me or a member of the COVID subcommittee so we can alert other members. Other members can rehearse the following week as long as they produce a negative test result prior to the rehearsal.

  • The COVID subcommittee will be composed of two or three members and shall rotate for each concert, with at least one returning member to provide some continuity. For our first concert, the subcommittee will include Vicki Glenn and Becky Linton.

  • Future members of the subcommittee do not necessarily need to come from the board, so we may ask you or other members if you would be willing to spend a concert cycle or two as part of the committee.

 

Now, about those test kits…

 

The board would like to make our rehearsal space as safe and inclusive as possible. To that end, we are again requiring members to provide evidence of a negative test result prior to attending rehearsal. It is our belief that this will allow the most members to feel safe enough to return to in-person rehearsals.

 

Unfortunately, with our limited budget, we do not have the means to purchase the number of test kits required to supply to all of you for the entire season. On the other hand, we don’t want to shift the financial burden of obtaining test kits to all of our members, either.

 

So we are asking as many of you as possible to claim the eight test kits per month that most of us are entitled to via our health insurance plans. If you’re unfamiliar with this benefit, or have trouble with the process, we will be glad to help you through it. (For example, I go to https://www.cvs.com/shop/home-health-care/home-tests/home-covid-test?icid=coronavirus-lp-nav-home-testing to order kits online and pick them up at the store. The link for Walgreens is https://www.walgreens.com/findcare/covid19/otc. The first order requires you to enter your health insurance info, but then it’s saved for subsequent orders. Other pharmacies should have a similar process, and you should also be able to call in an order if you’re not comfortable doing so online.)

 

Alternately, you may be able to take advantage of any testing provided to you, say, by an employer.

 

We understand that obtaining tests regularly may not be feasible for all members, or may cause significant hardship for some of you. In those cases, we’re happy to help with the process of obtaining your free test kits, and in cases where that’s not possible, the board will maintain a moderate supply of test kits for anyone who is unable to obtain their own. The hope is that enough of us will be able to take advantage of the health insurance benefit that the chorus budget is not overwhelmed by purchasing tests.

 

As we did last year, the board will continue to monitor the current environment, guidelines and recommendations and adjust our policies so we can safely enjoy making beautiful music together.

Photo: Edward J. Hynes, 2017