Recreation Department: General Information & Policies

1.)    Refunds:

Ø  All refunds issued will be charged a $10 administrative fee except for refunds issued due to a program cancellation. One administrative fee will be charged per family. Refunds will not be issued for travel sports.

Ø  We reserve the right to cancel, alter, supplement, limit registration or change any dates times, locations, ages, fees.

Ø  No refunds will be issued after the first class or practice or if a program does not run its full course due to inclement weather, gym cancellations or circumstances beyond our control.

Ø  If checks are payable to an outside organization, refunds will be handled through that organization in accordance with their policies.

2.)    Cancellations:  Bridgewater Recreation and the Board of Education reserve the right to cancel or change sites, dates, and times pending registrations and school priorities.

3.)    Insurance: the Township does not provide individual medical insurance coverage for its participants.  Each participant will be covered under his/her family’s medical policy.  It is recommended that families have insurance before the child participates in a youth sports program as well as adult participants.

4.)    Volunteer Coaching Qualifications:  All coaches (head and assistants) are required to have attended a Rutgers Youth Sports Safety Orientation class and submit to a Criminal History Background Check (for coaches older than 18) to volunteer. Volunteers must be pre-approved by the Recreation Office to be an eligible coach and must attend any mandatory coaches and/or program meetings. There may be additional licensing requirements for coaches, particularly at the travel level.

5.)   Therapeutic Recreation:  We have a working relationship with the Somerset County Therapeutic Recreation Department (TR).  This allows us to have recreation programs that promote an active lifestyle that improves social, cognitive, emotional functioning and enhances participants’ abilities.  Please note appropriately on the registration form if your child has any special needs and/or requires certain accommodations.  Please submit three weeks prior to the deadline, six weeks for Summer Playgrounds and Pee Wee Playgrounds.

6.)   Utilization of Township owned property/facilities: See requirements below; Applications for permits require the following:

1)      Completed Hold Harmless Agreement (signed, witnessed and notarized at the Township).

2)      Certificate of Insurance – The certificate of insurance must list resident’s name or group’s name as the insured. In addition, the Township of Bridgewater must be listed as additional named insured. The liability limit for bodily injury and property damage must not be less than $1,000,000 per occurrence.

After the application, certificate of insurance and hold harmless agreement are received, the application will be processed.  Allow a minimum of two weeks for processing.

7.)    Request for Fields:

Ø  An e-mail must be sent to recreationcs@bridgewaternj.gov at least one month prior to the start of the season with a request for fields.  The email must include the requested facility, dates & times of use, and the start/end date of the season.

Ø  Applicants requesting opening day ceremony services (i.e. parks, police and/or recreation) must provide a detailed description of services needed.  Requests must be e-mailed to recreationcs@bridgewaternj.gov at least one month in advance.

Ø  Applicants planning on hosting a tournament must provide a detailed description of services needed. Requests must be e-mailed to recreationcs@bridgewaternj.gov at least one month in advance.

Ø  Certain issues can arise during the use of Township facilities including problems with lights, lining, equipment, bathrooms, parking lots, damage to actual fields, and vandalism.  Organizations must contact the Recreation office (e-mail recreationcs@bridgewaternj.gov) with a complete description of the issue and should not contact the parks department employees directly.

Ø  Any permit changes and/or additions to existing permits need to be e-mailed to recreationcs@bridgewaternj.gov.

Ø  All inclement weather decisions during the week will be made by 3:30 p.m. and 7:30 a.m. on weekends. Decisions will be posted on the website www.bridgewaternj.gov and are available on the code-a-phone system (908) 526-7107.  Failure to cooperate with cancellation decisions will result in loss of permit and/or subject to damage fees.

Ø  Misuse of a permit, such as but not limited to, allowing other groups/parties to utilize permitted facilities under false pretense may result in forfeit of all current permits and possible future permits.

8.)    Assigning of Fields: Fields are assigned based on two criteria.  The first is the compatibility with the sport requested with the facility being requested (i.e. is the field proper size and does it contain the proper fixed equipment).  Secondly, organizations are prioritized in the following order:

1)      Bridgewater Township Recreation Programs

2)      Bridgewater Township Affiliated programs (i.e. programs incorporating recreation sports on behalf of the Township)

3)      Outside Groups, in order of preference by the percentage of Bridgewater residents participating in that organization based on the most recent twelve months for which roster data is available.

9.)    Lightning Policy:  We will monitor the weather and make the decision to notify the head coaches or officials of dangerous situations and recommend the suspension of activity if there is lightning.  If activities have begun for an event, the supervising coach, official, referee or umpire in charge will have the ability to suspend activity.  The decision to suspend activity will be based on the Flash-To-Bang Method utilized by the NOAA Lightning Safety, National Weather Service:

Count the seconds from the time the lightning is sighted to when the clap of thunder is heard.  Divide this number by five to obtain how far away (in miles) the lightning is occurring.  If lightning is within six miles (a 30-second count between flash of lighting and bang of thunder), activity shall be suspended and everyone should seek shelter immediately.  Resumption of athletic activity shall not occur until thirty (30) minutes AFTER the lightning is seen or sound of thunder is heard.

10.) Emergency Reporting Procedures: facility permit holders are required to notify the Recreation office if police, fire or rescue squads are called to the facility in response to an incident that occurred during the event for which the permit was issued.  Permit holders should provide the following information:

(1)   A description of the circumstances that led to such a response (e.g., player suffered apparent broken collarbone)

(2)   The nature of the response (e.g., ambulance)

(3)   The results of the action (e.g., player transported to hospital)

11.)   Jewelry/Casts: Participants are prohibited from wearing jewelry (including earrings, which cannot be taped) while participating in any recreational program.  Anyone who is required to wear a cast or splint that is made of plaster, fiberglass, contains metal stiffeners, or any other hard object that could cause injury to another participant is prohibited from engaging in recreational programs.  Any cast or splint that falls outside this definition will not be permitted if the referee or site supervisor believes it could injure another participant.  Encasing the cast or splint in bubble wrap or other padded covering will not constitute an acceptable remedy for this rule.

12.)   Supervision: Parents/Guardians of minors are responsible for dropping off and picking up children promptly at the conclusion of the event.  Parents/ guardians should arrive before conclusion of the program.

13.)   Inclement weather: we will post inclement weather decisions on both the code-a-phone system (908) 526-7107 and website www.bridgewaternj.gov.  If Bridgewater-Raritan Public Schools are closed due to inclement weather, all Bridgewater Recreation activities/programs will also be cancelled.  All decisions will be made by 3:30 p.m. during the week and by 7:30 a.m. on weekends.  Please report to your designated field for a coach/umpire decision.

14.)   Holidays: Township fields will not close due to holidays however, Bridgewater Recreation does not schedule games when school is closed.  Practices are optional.

15.)   Payments: The Township accepts cash, check or credit card (Discover, MasterCard or Visa) payments. Please note: when using a credit card there is a $3.00 finance fee minimum. Checks are the only acceptable form of payment for programs made payable to outside organizations or groups.

16.)   Communication and Social Networking Policy: All communication between coaches/team managers and youth athletes shall be via telephone or e-mail with parents.  Coaches are prohibited from calling youth athletes’ cell phones and/or sending text messages and e-mails directly to youth athletes.  Parents may add their child’s e-mail to the team distribution list, however, parents shall be copied (cc) on any correspondence with coaches.

It is against Bridgewater Recreation policy to use social networking sites (such as Facebook or Twitter) as a means of team communication.  Furthermore, it is considered inappropriate for adult coaches to link or ‘friend’ with youth athletes on social network sites.

17.)   E-Mail distribution lists and Personal Information: Our e-mail distribution lists and databases are strictly to be used for official Township Recreation business only.  E-mail addresses and other personal information are not to be used by coaches or outside organizations for any other purpose other than official Township Recreation business only.  E-mails, including attachments, are intended solely for the attention and use of the intended addressee(s) and should not be forwarded as they may contain privileged and/or confidential information.

18.) Waiver of Fees: The Bridgewater Township Municipal Code provides that active members of volunteer organizations (Fire Departments, Rescue/First Aid Squads) and their family members shall be exempt from certain Township fees.  Family members of active members include husband, wife, children, father, mother, grandparents, and grandchildren.  They also include siblings, stepchildren or legally adopted child living in the same household.

Bridgewater Township Municipal Building 100 Commons Way, Bridgewater, NJ 08807 Monday- Thursday: 9 AM - 5 PM Fridays: 8 AM - 5 PM


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