Pickering FC
COVID-19 Update
September 25, 2020
Dear PFC Family,

This time of year is a key transition for many community clubs. From a typical, hectic Outdoor season of training and league play, cup competition and community programs to a busy Indoor season. Canada is one of the few countries where the Indoor season is typically longer than the Outdoor season and we are blessed to operate a year-round Club within our incredible facility. 

This year the transition is very different and our Coaches, Team Managers, Staff and Board have been working harder than ever before to make sure we have answers to your questions and can plan as best as possible for the future, all the time knowing the second wave could slow things down so our plans are constantly adapted. In order to prepare everyone for the Indoor season we will be holding Program Specific presentations next week to address:

  1. Summary of the Return to Play protocols as a reminder for current players and to provide new members with the protocols we have operated successfully since July 2nd
  2. Program outlines for the Indoor season including; training schedule, fees, program details and credit/refund plans.
  3. Pickering Soccer Centre entry and exit protocols. As you can imagine, our planning needs to be thorough and will need to take into account staggered field times, multiple entry/exit points, additional third-party users, sanitization and contact tracing protocols.

Our Return to Play strategy has worked very well so far and we continue to focus on not ‘dropping our guard’, but that’s also a team effort. If you see something that doesn’t look right please let your Coach know and we can address it. Our Pickering Soccer Centre protocols will be just, if not more, stringent and we look forward to sharing those with you soon.

Program Specific Presentations will be held on Friday October 2nd at:
  • 6:30-7:25pm     Grassroots (U8-U12 Development players)
  • 7:30-8:25pm     Competitive (U13-U21)
  • 8:30-9:25pm     OPDL (all age groups)

Log in details will be provided next week to current players and those that have attended tryouts or open houses.

Recreational programs, including Indoor Rec League, Women’s League, All Abilities and Walking Soccer will be provided with a link to a pre-recorded presentation that they can view at their leisure.

Our fantastic partners at The City of Pickering have agreed to work with us on extending the ability to access field permits through to Thanksgiving weekend. In doing so we can keep our players out in the fresh air that little bit longer and make up some more of the time that we missed out on. Your Coaches will update you on schedules for the weeks ahead.

The 2020-2021 Indoor program is OPEN FOR REGISTRATION and kicked off last weekend. You can still register to ensure your child is placed on a team. Click the image to register:
  • Multi-Season: This year we will be offering 3 mini-seasons (10 weeks each) instead of one long season (18 weeks). This will provide families with the flexibility to start their recreational involvement at a time that's right for them. 
  • Multi-sport players: Offering three mini-seasons will enable players that also participate in other sports to join us at the end of their current outdoor season or to get their soccer fix in before returning to another sport.
  • Discounts: The first season for each player will include their complete uniform package and Ontario Soccer registration. Subsequent seasons will be at a reduced rate to reflect those components are already paid for.
  • Outdoor kick-off: To make the most of this unusual Summer and to take advantage of good weather and fresh air the seasons will all kick-off on our community soccer fields located in neighborhoods across the City of Pickering.
  • Standards: PFC continues to develop our own match officials and using them for each game to ensure fairness and guidance to young players.

Pickering Football Club is one of the few Clubs that offers a game AND practice each week during the Outdoor season. For the Indoor Recreational season any players aged 8-12 who would like an additional session to support the game play can register for our excellent Skills Centre. Click the image to register for the Fall Season with a discount of $20 for those booking both Fall and Spring sessions.
PFC All Abilities Programs
PFC All Abilities kicks off this month too! Head Coach Jarod and Coaches T, Zain and Sarah are excited to welcome back players with three different playing options this season:

  1. All Abilities Junior and Senior Soccer, our tried and trusted model bringing players together for fun, fitness and friendship every Saturday morning starting October 31, 2020
  2. All Abilities Advanced Skills Program, our new program will enable a limited number of players to experience more advanced training, starts September 22, 2020.
  3. All Abilities Virtual Training Program, following the success of our pandemic sessions we will continue to offer online training for players that are unable to join us on the field. Start date TBC.

Please contact our All Abilities program coordinator at allabilities@pickeringfc.a for more information or to register.
PFC Community Programs
Our popular Community Programs will resume that is September & October.
  • Walk the Dome -resumes on Monday Sept 21 and runs daily from Mon - Thurs from 9am - 11am
  • Walking Soccer resumes on Tuesday Sept 22 and runs weekly on Tuesdays from 10:30-noon.
  • Adult Drop In Soccer on Sunday nights from 8:30-10pm begin October 4th

* Covid protocols and participant waivers will be in effect for all community programming
Indoor Women's League

Our popular Women’s Indoor League is back and we have 1 spot left! Contact details are included below so please reach out to us quickly to book your spot.
Grassroots Development
Our Open House sessions are coming to an end although the door is always open for new players to join us. If you have questions about the program please contact our Grassroots Director, Hollie Babut (grassroots@pickeringfc.ca) for more details. Players are still more than welcome to register and join our Open House but need to be in the system for contact tracing purposes so please contact us directly if you are interested in learning more.

Registration for our U8-U12 Grassroots Development program is now open and can be completed after contact with the Head Coach.

  • 26-week program
  • Weekly league play
  • 2 practices per week
  • Qualified and screened Coaching staff
  • Goalkeeper specialist session
Pickering FC runs teams in the Durham Region Soccer League (DRSL) and the Central Soccer League (CSL). Promotion and relegation allow for teams at U13 and up to be promoted from the DRSL into the CSL. The CSL covers an area from Barrie in the north to Peterborough in the east and as far west as Etobicoke. In conjunction with the Team Head Coach and our Director of Soccer Operations, Dave Benning, the playing group is assessed for their ability level to play at one of these two levels.

As tryouts are now being completed we still encourage interested players to contact the Club directly to see which teams have roster space.
High Performance
The Pickering FC structure defines high performance as those programs where teams compete in standards-based leagues. This includes the Ontario Player Development League (OPDL) for players from U13-U17 age groups and then for older players they enter League1 Ontario (L1O). These leagues bringing with them a higher cost that reflects the increased training time, coaching level, longer season, uniform and equipment.
Match Officials
The Match Official Committee is working closely with our technical Staff to not only ensure the new Laws of the Game that came into play this Summer are introduced but to also enforce the Ontario Soccer COVID-19 related restrictions to play. These can be found on page 18-24 here and include areas such as:

  • No throw-ins
  • No Spitting
  • No handshakes or high-fives
  • No heading
Governance and Operations
Our PFC AGM is to be held on November 18th at the Pickering Soccer Centre (subject to COVID-19 requirements). In the coming weeks we will highlight available Board positions and the timelines to apply. In addition, we will begin the recruitment of our Standing Committees for:
  • Finance Committee.
  • Risk-Audit Committee.
  • Governance Committee.
  • Nominations Committee.

The Standing Committees are an integral part of any not-for-profit organization. They would typically meet once a month for 1-2 hours and address matters specific to their area of the Club. If you have an interest in volunteering some time on one of these Committees please contact Matt Greenwood at execdirector@pickeringfc.ca to arrange an informal chat. 
Don’t forget, our Return to Play strategy is available on the PFC website under our COVIVD-19 page for everyone’s reference and provides a lot of detail on the three key components to our Return to Play Strategy. We have also made available a recording of the webinar we had previously delivered to Grassroots, Competitive and OPDL families in June. The link can be found here.

Our 28th consecutive Weekly Update is supported by ongoing updates and stories through our Twitter, Instagram or Facebook platforms. 

Stay safe.
Matt Greenwood, Executive Director