Most Minnesota high school volleyball teams are scheduled to open their seasons tonight.  They were going to be opening in empty gyms in terms of fans in the stands.  Nobody, nada, zilch.

On this opening day of volleyball the Minnesota State High School League (MSHSL) in conjunction with the Minnesota Education Department and Minnesota Department of Health announced they were going allow two people per team member to enter the gym.

Masks and physical distancing (6 foot separation among spectators) are required also.

I was told by Faribault Activities Director Keith Badger they will also be allowed to have 25 percent of the gym's capacity.

The change came about in part because of a number of parents of players contacting their state legislators as well as the MSHSL.

In a news release from the Minnesota House Republican Caucus State Representative Paul Anderson of Starbuck is credited with urging the MSHSL to revisit their attendance guidelines.  "He said the ban on fans for indoor events is arbitrary and inconsistent with state policies regarding gatherings amid the COVID-19 outbreak."

According to the news release, "Anderson and fellow State Representatives Mary Franson of Alexandria and Paul Novotny of Elk River wrote a letter to the MSHSL Executive Director Erich Martens Tuesday requesting the league update it's policy."

Anderson's reaction to the news today about the policy change was, "This is good news and I thank the MSHSL for being responsive and making a change for the better on this issue.  Common sense prevailed.  The new guidelines are more consistent with our state's standards.  Most of all, I am happy for athletes and their families who will now enjoy a little more normalcy in their lives as far as competitions are concerned."

I spoke with a few Activities Directors in the KDHL area and some are not happy with the timing of this decision.  Many purchased streaming services they would not have purchased had this guideline been in place.

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