We have recently received both positive and negative feedback from our members regarding our postponing of upcoming events surrounding the Covid-19 concerns in Missouri. First and foremost, thank you for your feedback regarding these changes. We would like to take the time to explain our reasoning for these adjustments.
Obviously, we are not particularly excited about these cancellations ourselves. As you can imagine, cancelling social events greatly effect the Club’s income and our staff’s personal wages. We are doing this in an effort to support the social distancing recommendation, which varies from city-to-city and changes daily, if not hourly.
Some cities are recommending that groups no larger than 20, 50, 250, 1000 people, etc. meet in public places. The main goal of cancelling events in our community, and trust us when we say that we are not alone in this as we have personally spoken with many event hosts in the area, is to reduce the fear of missing out on events as a way to encourage members of our community to stay home. This is pressure that is being put on us by our community and healthcare leaders. By reducing the amount of events we are hosting currently, we are reducing the pressure for you, our members, to attend outings and events. This may not be popular, but it is a strategy referred to as “flattening the curve” and as a nation, let alone the community of Columbia, we are being asked to participate in this effort.
We have included two links below that explain how this strategy works and why it is being recommended:
From a community perspective, “flattening the curve only works if we take necessary measures before they seem necessary. If it works, people will think we over-reacted. We have to be willing to look like we over-reacted.” – Kaila Colbin
In addition, all of our privately scheduled events for the remainder of March and into early April have canceled their events. We have hosts of golf tournaments that are scheduled in May reaching out to us regarding canceling their tournaments. This is not just a matter of Old Hawthorne making frivolous decisions regarding hosting member events. It is much bigger than us.
You can see that The Club is still open and operating. We are not going to prevent you from joining us on the golf course, courts, fitness center or bar and grille at this point. Those gatherings are fairly small and completely optional. However, when we host an event that is ticketed, or that you pay an annual fee for, that automatically adds pressure for you to attend. Government leaders are requesting that we cancel these events or postpone them so that potential attendees don’t feel like they are missing out on fun by staying home. That’s it. The government wants you to stay home until they get outbreaks under control, regardless of if they are directly effecting our community at this present moment. We are simply being asked to remove temptations.
We want you to know that we are taking these postponements on a case-by-case basis. Certain events have different cancellation deadlines as far as food orders, staffing logistics, and even vendor contracts. It may not make sense to you, but we ask you to please be respectful of the professionals we have making these decisions. We assure you that we take this responsibility very seriously and are doing the best we can to make the best decisions for our members, employees, community and country. We hope that you will be supportive of our decisions, even if you don’t agree or understand.
As far as future events, we can’t speak on those currently. We certainly hope they aren’t postponed as that would have been a huge waste of our time and money to plan them. There are many details in the air, especially with the news of Mizzou moving classes online for the remainder of the semester. Please take into consideration that approximately 70% of our workforce are college students. The community’s decisions and our operational decisions directly effect them as well.
Again, we take this very seriously. We are not taking political sides in this issue and are not even taking those biases into consideration. We will continue to rely on the recommendations of the CDC, WHO, and various community leaders when making these decisions.
The Club is currently up and running and we hope to remain so, but we are taking this one day at a time, as everyone else in America is.