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Simcoe Legion branch re-opens to three-day weekly schedule

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The Simcoe branch of the Royal Canadian Legion has begun welcoming back members and guests.

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The branch, closed as part of the COVID-19 protocols in mid-March, was able to reopen on Aug. 18.

John Maskell, vice-president of the branch, noted the pandemic has created issues for service clubs and halls.

“I belong to every club in town, the worst part for a club is the limit of 50 people,” he said. “You cannot hold a celebration of life, you can’t hold a wedding. So, basically you’ve got a big hall that’s completely empty. But it’s understandable and it will open up in time.”

He added that other clubs he is a member of have also missed out on multiple fundraisers, barbecues and other events that bring in money.

Legion members and guests are welcome in the building from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. Hours and dates will be extended once the clientele start returning.

“When we went to open earlier we couldn’t decide how we should open so we called the health unit for a little bit of direction,” said Maskell. “Now we’re going three days a week hoping to get our customers back.”

Following health guidelines, masks are mandatory and hand sanitizer is available as you enter the building.

Tables have been moved for social distancing and directional arrows are placed on the floor.

Anyone entering the building must sign in for contact tracing.

“We are open, come on in,” said Maskell, adding that the Legion is always looking for younger members.

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