KITCHENER -- Guelph is lifting some of its restrictions on recreational activities and locations.

The city announced Wednesday that it decided to change the rules around parks, sports fields and leash-free areas based on advice from the province and Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health.

Here’s what they say residents can do:

  • Play on city sports fields
  • Canoe and kayak
  • Fish
  • Fly a kite
  • Exercise (yoga, running, etc.)
  • Use picnic shelters, pavilions and benches
  • Play disc golf, basketball, soccer, tennis or pickleball
  • Visit designated leash-free areas and use the city’s 41 sports fields as leash-free areas

However there are a few things residents are being asked not to do. They include:

  • Participate in organized sports on sports fields or courts
  • Use playgrounds, splash pads and wading pools
  • Use park washrooms
  • Book pavilions for gatherings

The fenced leash-free area at Peter Misersky Park remains closed to the public while it undergoes scheduled construction.

A few other recreational areas will soon be open to the public.

The city says tennis and pickleball courts will be opening on May 23. However they are advising the public to follow the guidelines set out by Tennis Canada and are reminding players to bring and use their own equipment.

The Silvercreek Skate Park is also set to open next week, although the official date has not yet been set.

“This is a positive first step toward getting back to our routines, but we still have a responsibility to use our outdoor facilities safely,” says Guelph mayor Cam Guthrie in a release. “That means maintaining physical distance and following public health protocols to prevent the spread of COVID-19.”

Residents should continue to keep a distance of two metres from people outside their immediate family and stay away from gatherings involving more than five people.

Public health officials say they will continue to monitor active cases and if they see an increase in cases they will work with the city to come up with a solution.