COVID-19 Updates & Resources

centre updates

April 2021 update

The province of Ontario has announced a lockdown (and now, a stay-at-home order), scheduled to begin Sat. Apr 3 at 12:01am. During this lockdown, Dovercourt Recreation Centre will be closed and most programs suspended.

There are still some unknowns with regards to future programs, but this is what we know at this time:

Fitness classes

Online fitness classes will continue, but in-person fitness classes will not be available until we reopen. We will issue credits for anyone who prepaid a drop-in fit pass class for April 3-7

We will be moving some registered specialty fitness classes to online delivery. We will send the Zoom details to join these classes soon. Any specialty fitness classes we cannot deliver online will be postponed. Once we know when we can restart programs, we will credit for the missed classes.

Aquafitness & Spin

The remaining winter aquafitness & spin classes will be postponed. Once we know when we can restart programs, we will credit for the missed classes.


Recreational swims will not be available until we reopen. We will issue credits for anyone who prepaid a swim between April 3-7. 

Swim pass holders will have their passes frozen until we reopen.

Winter Swim lesson participants will receive a credit for the final class of the winter session. 

Spring Swim lessons will be rescheduled once we know when we can reopen. Participants will be re-registered in the new-date lessons. 

Aquatic leadership participants who have a course occurring during the 28-day shutdown will be contacted individually about the cancellation of programs or, where possible, rescheduling the remaining classes.


Winter Basketball and Winter Indoor Soccer participants will be issued refunds for the remaining classes.


Dancers registered for the April 11th classes will be credited, and will have the opportunity to re-register for spring classes at a later date. 

Music & Art:

Online art and music classes will continue as planned. In-person music lessons will be suspended until we can reopen.

Pottery participants will be credited for the April classes and have the opportunity to resume make-up classes upon re-opening.

Out of School programs

Until further notice, Before and After-school programs will continue as normal. There are no before or after school programs during the April Break, April 12-16.

Camps: April Break:

This lockdown includes the closure of day camps across the province. All April campers will be refunded for their registration.

Spring session registration

All online registration is currently paused. More details about credits and new session dates TBD.

Contacting us

The best way to reach us is to email The inbox will be monitored, but please be patient if you don’t hear back from us right away. We have very limited staff. 

We appreciate your support during this challenging time.

Dovercourt is essentially a small business and depends on revenue from programs to carry out its charitable mission of a healthy, active and engaged community. After 33+ years of service to this neighbourhood, we are struggling. We have been operating with reduced staff and much smaller numbers in our programs in accordance with COVID guidelines. Please show your support by maintaining your Fit Pass to take online fitness classes, registering in programs when we reopen and making a donation on our Donate page. 

The City of Ottawa is moving from an Orange to Red Zone. What does that mean for your programs at Dovercourt?

All programs we are offering can continue to run.

With an abundance of caution, we planned all of our winter and spring programs to meet the Red guidelines, including in-person fitness classes, swim lessons, recreational swims, before & after school programs, WAVE, sports, music, art and dance classes. 

We look forward to seeing you. 

February 16, 2021 update

Now that the provincial lockdown is over, we are rescheduling our Winter session. We are excited to see you, and we thank you for your patience as we prepare for your return. By the end of this week, you should see updates to the website and Winter programs with new dates. 

Reopening dates:

  • Swim lessons resume Saturday, February 27.  
  • Registered programs, including specialty fitness and aquafitness, sports, dance, music and arts classes, as well as recreational swims, resume Monday, March 1. 
  • The Fitness Centre will not reopen right away. We are working through staff schedules to allow for admittance and screening to the Fitness Centre. Please stay tuned. 

What do I need to do?

  • If you were registered in a Winter session program, that spot is yours. You will receive an email confirming your registration in your program by the end of day Friday, February 19. Please check it carefully to make sure it is the program in which you were registered. Please email if there is a discrepancy.
  • If you have not yet registered, online registration for the remaining spaces will open on Monday, February 22. 
  • If you have a Pool pass, you will be able to book recreational swims (from March 1 onwards) on February 22. Extra time will be added to your pass for the time that we were closed. 
  • If you have a Fit Pass, you will be able to book in-person fitness classes (that begin March 1) 7 days ahead, on February 22. 
  • If your Fit Pass has expired, you may purchase a new pass online. 
  • A new Fit Pass schedule (group fitness, aquafitness and spin classes) will be posted on the website this week. The number of in-person and online classes on the Fit Pass schedule has been reduced because of the smaller number of active Fit Passes. As sales increase, we will be able to add classes back in. 

So far, 2021 continues to test our ability to adapt to constant change! The best way to support Dovercourt is to register in our programs. We are grateful for you, our community, and we appreciate your patience as we work through these challenges. And it goes without saying that we are very excited to welcome you back to the Centre in a couple of weeks!

If you have any questions, please send us an email at

Due to the Provincial lockdown, we have suspended registration for January classes. Online classes (group fitness, arts) will continue. Registration is open for March Break camps.

If you have registered in an upcoming program, we will let you know when your program will start. 

Ontario is moving into a lockdown phase, beginning at 12:01am on Dec. 26. Our building will be closed and many programs will not be available until we reopen. 

  • In-person fitness classes will not be available until we reopen. We have added additional online classes. We value your support at this difficult time and would appreciate you keep your Fit Pass during this time. 
  • Our Fitness centre will not be available until we reopen.
  • Registered fitness programs and arts, music & dance program start dates will be postponed
  • Rec swims will not be available until we reopen.
  • Before and Afterschool programs start date: TBA.
  • Aquatic leadership will begin with the online portion of the course; the pool portion will occur when we reopen.
  • Our outdoor rink will be open, but there will be no access to the building. Read more about rinks and new guidelines here >>
  • The SJAM winter trail will be available.

Please continue to register for Winter programs. We will communicate the new start date as soon as we know it. 

The province declared Ottawa to be in “Orange” phase, meaning our in-person fitness classes and use of the Fitness Centre can resume, starting Mon. Nov. 9.

Dear Dovercourt Clients,

The Province of Ontario has reintroduced measures to help slow the spread of COVID-19 in our community.

As a result of today’s announcement, starting Saturday, October 10, the following programs are suspended until further notice:

  • Fitness: In-person fitness classes, fitness drop-in programs, access to the fitness centre
  • Adult Hockey

Dovercourt classes and programs that are NOT suspended:

  • Online fitness classes
  • Swim Lessons and Open Swims
  • Before and After School Programs
  • WAVE
  • Kids Dance Classes (which will run outdoors)

For the time being, arts and culture, sports, martial arts, and other sessional programming will run as planned within guidelines set by local and provincial health authorities. We will continue to provide updates to our clients as the situation evolves.

We will be reaching out to all clients impacted by the suspensions with options next week.

Thank you for your patience,

Dovercourt Recreation Association

September 11, 2020 update

from John Rapp, ED of Dovercourt

We are looking forward to seeing you back with us at Dovercourt. We are excited to have activities and classes starting again this fall, but we are still far from normal in our operations. 

While we have outlined safety guidelines for participation on our website, we wanted to email our clients directly to inform you about our approach and protocols to limit the spread of COVID-19. We serve a very diverse population, and we are considered a safe space for many medically at-risk individuals. We are going forward with an abundance of caution to ensure the safety of both our clients and our staff. 

As per Ottawa Public Health guidelines, to reduce potential exposure to the virus, we will:

• enforce physical distancing in our classes;

• enforce the mandatory wearing of masks on the way in and out of the building;

• restrict the areas of the building you can access. For now, public spaces such as the lobbies and the café and change rooms will not be available. 

For fitness classes, staff will be on hand to greet you at the start of your program and guide you to your program location. For most programs, you enter through the exterior door of your assigned room, and you will exit from that room directly to the outside. There will be a designated bathroom restricted to the clients in that room. Please arrive in your workout attire and bring a filled water bottle. Equipment usage will be limited to items that are easy to clean (e.g. hand weights). You may bring your own mats, yoga blocks and straps etc.  

For programs in the pool, we have set up a path that leads you from the parking lot entrance into the pool area; after your class, you will exit through the change rooms where you can change into dry clothes. Please arrive in a bathing suit under your clothes as change rooms are only available after your program. 

Following each program, we will do an enhanced cleaning of each space to ensure minimal contact exposures from one group to another. 

During summer camps and swim lessons, we found that the first day with these new procedures took some adjustment, but it becomes easier with repetition, so please be patient with those around you!

If you have a medical reason not to wear a mask, or have anything else you require in terms of accommodation, please let us know. While we will work hard to protect you and our staff from exposure, we will work just as hard to ensure that we can include all ages and abilities in what we do this fall. Contact Alanna at if you need any accommodations or are unable to use face coverings at this time.

If you have concerns or questions, please let me know at

Welcome back!

John Rapp

Executive Director

Dovercourt Recreation Centre

We miss all of you, our Dovercourt community!

May 20/ 20: See our latest update below > 

We’ll keep this page updated with news from Dovercourt. Be sure to check our Facebook page where we’re posting articles, activities, and fitness tips from our staff. 

Check our new COVID-19 Activities page where you can find do-at-home fitness, arts & crafts & more. 

Read a message from Dovercourt about supporting community during isolation in the April issue of Kitchissippi Times

Parks and playstructures.

Update May 9, 2020

The City of Ottawa has reopened many parks for use including the Westboro Kiwanis Park at Dovercourt —with some conditions. Playstructures continue to be off-limits. Read the latest on the City’s website

We thank you for your patience while we work through this very challenging time.

Support local businesses

From the WBIA’s website, here are some things you can do to help support local businesses: 

  • Buy meals from local restaurants for delivery or takeout
  • Shop small businesses online
  • Consider purchasing gift cards for future use – they’ll receive the revenue now while foot traffic is down and you’ll have something to look forward to!
  • Share, tweet, post about your favourite small business – ❤️ let’s spread some positivity!

The WBIA (Westboro Village) has compiled a list on their website of local businesses and charities that we can support during this difficult time, including restaurants. Many have online stores or ordering, and curbside pickup or delivery. 

We Are All In This Together

Our doors may be closed but our hearts and ears are still open!

If you are able, donate to the Ottawa Food Bank 

We are aware of the multiple challenges some of our neighbours may be facing at the moment but we want you to know that we are still here for you!

Please see below for some resources that may be helpful to some in our community.

Food Resources

Ottawa Food Bank Locations in the west end of Ottawa:

Westboro Region Food Bank

Phone: 613-722-3851

Location: 354 Madison Ave. Ottawa, ON K2A 0E7

Hours of operation: Monday 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., Thursday 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Note: Please bring ID and proof of address

Caldwell Family Centre

Phone: 613-728-1800

Location: 1100 Medford St, Units 20-22, Ottawa, ON K1Z 8L5

Hours of operation: Tuesday to Friday 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Saturday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Note: Please bring ID and proof of address

UPDATE: At this time, Caldwell Family Centre is operating at the following times:
– Tuesday to Friday 9 AM to noon and 1 – 4 PM

Foster Farm Family House

Phone: 613-596-4866

Location: 1085 Ramsey Cres, Unit 334, Ottawa, ON K2B 7Z9

Hours of operation: Tuesday 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., Wednesday 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. (PLEASE NOTE: 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m is for students and those who work during the day ONLY), Thursday 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., and Friday 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Foster Farm Family House is closed the first week of every month.
UPDATE: This program is operating by appointment only at this time. Please call to book an appointment Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 9am-3pm.
Note: Please bring ID and proof of address

Britannia Woods Food Pantry

Phone: 613-820-0853

Location: 115 Ritchie Street Unit #9, Ottawa, ON K2B 6E8

Hours of operation: Tuesday 6:00p.m. to 8:00p.m., Friday 9:30a.m. to 11:30a.m.
Note: Please bring ID and proof of address
Update: Britannia Woods Food Pantry is now operating by appointment only. Please call 613-820-0853

Parkdale Food Centre

Phone: 613-722-8019

Location: 30 Rosemount Ave, Unit 2, Ottawa, ON. K2C 2B5

Hours of operation: Tuesday 12:00p.m. to 3:00p.m., and 6:00p.m. to 8:00p.m., Thursday 12:00p.m. to 3:00p.m.
Note: Please bring ID and proof of address

UPDATE: Phone Parkdale Food Center at 613-722-8019 or 613-729-0980 between 9am-3pm to place an order, or fill out an order form online to put in an order for delivery.

  • Deliveries taking place Monday through Thursday.
  • You must live in their catchment area for this service.
  • Visit their website for more details.

FAMSAC Food Cupboard

Phone: 613-820-5428

Location: 2006 Robertson Road, Unit 8, Ottawa ON

Please contact the FAMSAC Food Cupboard for more information on how to use their program.
Note: Please call the number below rather than dropping in. FAMSAC Food Cupboard will take your call and set up an appointment to visit. FAMSAC is also closed the first week of every month.

Centretown Emergency Food Centre

Phone: 613-232-3059

Location: Centretown United Church, 507 Bank St (Basement), Ottawa, ON K2P 1Z5

Hours of operation: Reduced Hours During Covid-19 Emergency

Monday, noon to 1 pm

Friday, noon to 1 pm

Mental Health Resources

COVID-19 is an unprecedented global event that has caused stress for everyone. 

Ottawa Public Health’s website is a wonderful resource; check out their information about mental health

Here is an additional list of mental health resources provided by Ottawa Public Health (PDF)

If you are in crisis, please contact the Mental Health Crisis Line (24 hours a day/7 days a week) at 613-722-6914 or if outside Ottawa toll-free at 1-866-996-0991.

If you (or your child) are experiencing thoughts of suicide or harming yourself, please call 9-1-1. 

Information Line for Child and Youth Mental Health and Youth Addictions Services 

YSB has expanded the role of the crisis line and online chat to provide information about child and youth mental health and youth addiction services in Eastern Ontario.  The information and crisis line can be reached by calling 613-260-2360 or 1-877-377-7775 and the online chat at

Best practices during COVID-10

wash your hands frequently; keep physical distance of 2m
Don't touch your face; get medical help if unwell
dovercourt staff pose on playstructure

Previous updates:

May 20, 2020 – Latest Update


As of May 20th, Dovercourt has cancelled all camps scheduled to run from June 29th to July 3rd, as well as all Overnight camps. This is in line with the Province of Ontario’s announcement of cancelling Overnight camps, and the City of Ottawa’s closure of all recreation, sports, and culture facilities until June 30th. If you are currently registered for one of these programs, you can expect an email from Dovercourt with program-specific information. 

If Dovercourt is unable to provide camps as offered for a given week, we will provide affected clients with a full refund for the camp, plus refunds for associated purchases of extended care and/or camp swim lessons. If we do cancel a week of camp as planned, we will reach out to all affected clients by email before processing refunds. For information on how we are currently processing refunds, please see the bottom section of this post.

If you would like to withdraw your child from camps that are still scheduled to run, Dovercourt has reduced the associated admin fee to $10.00, and refunds will be subject to the same process as explained in the bottom section of this post.


As of May 20th, we have cancelled all one-week swim lessons scheduled to run from June 29th to July 3rd. This is in line with the City of Ottawa’s closure of all recreation, sports, and culture facilities until June 30th. If you are currently registered for one of these programs, you can expect an email from Dovercourt with program-specific information. 

All associated clients will be refunded in full, as explained in the bottom section of this post. If we do cancel any further lessons, we will reach out to affected clients before processing refunds.

If you would like to withdraw your child from lessons that are still scheduled to run, Dovercourt has reduced the associated admin fee to $10.00, and refunds will be subject to the same process as explained in the bottom section of this post.


All payments have been suspended and will remain suspended while the centre is closed. Before any payments resume, all affected clients will be contacted by email.


Due to a switch in registration software at the end of 2019, account statements for 2019 and earlier years are only available by email request. For 2019 account statements, showing childcare-related purchases with Dovercourt for the 2019 calendar year, please email, and we will do our best to get you your statement within three business days. For 2020 tax receipts, which show qualified childcare purchases made in the 2020 calendar year, please log in to your online account at and use the “Tax Receipt” function.


All courses and classes affected by our closure from March 16th onwards have been cancelled, and refunds have been provided accordingly. Cheque refunds for this period will be sent out by June 5th. If you have not received your cheque after June 5th, please reach out to for assistance.


If your summer payment was made online with a valid credit card or EFT information, and no course switches have happened since then, your refund will be made directly back to that form of payment. If you paid over the phone or in person, your refund will be provided via cheque to the address currently linked to your online account at If your payment was made using account credit, promo letter, or coupon, your refund will be provided as an account credit. If you paid with a subsidy, your refund will be provided back to the subsidy.

Update May 1, 2020: 

After School program 2020-21

Registration for the 2020-2021 school year programs, including After School and Breakfast Club is currently paused and we are not processing registrations or taking payments until further notice.  

If you are interested in registering for these programs, please add your name to the waitlist and we will be in touch with you when registration begins again.

Our Centre & program refunds etc.

As you will have heard, the City of Ottawa has extended its closure of public facilities until June 30, which, of course, includes Dovercourt’s main building as well as our satellite locations.

In the coming weeks, we will withdraw you from classes impacted by the closure and will refund either an entire or prorated amount for classes missed at Dovercourt. 

March Break Camps

All payments have been refunded.

Winter Session classes

Refunds will be issued on a prorated basis; the value will be dependant on the number of classes that were not delivered.

Spring Session

Refunds will be processed in full. 

Memberships and passes

All payments have been suspended, and accounts will not be charged. 

Afterschool and WAVE

All payments have been suspended, and accounts will not be charged.

PD Days

Refunds will be processed for all undelivered and undeliverable programs. 

Private Music/Art Lessons at BSOMA and Dovercourt Personal Training

All pre-purchased lessons will remain on your account; no refunds will be issued at this time.

Summer Camps

As of today, summer camps have not been cancelled. We remain hopeful that buildings will reopen, and we can provide summer camp services to our community. We will continue to follow the regulations set by the City and local/national health organizations as we adjust for summer operations. Camp refunds will be issued if cancellations occur.

General refund information:

  • All online registrations will be refunded back to the credit card on file
  • All payments made in person or over the phone will be refunded as a credit on your account; then a refund will be issued by cheque and mailed to the address on file.
  • All payments made with credit will be refunded back as a credit on your account. 
  • All Administrative Fees are waived.

We have many refunds to issue and will work our way through them as quickly as we can. The added steps involved with issuing refunds by cheque will have an impact on when you can expect to receive them, many out of our control. If you have not received your refund or account adjustment by June 5, please email us at, and we will follow up. 

The City of Ottawa has closed its parks for anything but passing through. Signage is up at all local parks; please walk through but don’t linger or gather, and retain a 2m (6ft) distance.

Our playground is the best playground ever, but for now, experts are asking us all to stay off. There is still too much unknown about how the virus can stay on surfaces —even cold metal. Until we know more, please don’t touch our play structure (and tire swing, and swings), even though it’s especially hard to resist with spring now coming quickly. 😔

It will be worth it.

As you are aware, Dovercourt facilities are closed, and programs cancelled until at least April 6. We are following the advice of the medical directors of health and are in communication with our partners, the City of Ottawa, to ensure that we are getting up-to-the-minute information in these rapidly-evolving circumstances.

We take the safety of our staff and clients seriously. While we want to ensure that our community is physically distancing to help stop the spread of the Covid 19 virus, it is important to stay in contact with family, friends and neighbours to ensure everyone’s mental health. We will be utilizing our social media channels to pass along tips, strategies, and ideas to make this time more engaging and fun. Find us on Facebook and Twitter

e Content

Following the recommendations made by the City of Ottawa, Ottawa Public Health and Federal government agencies, we have cancelled all Dovercourt Recreation Association (including Bluesfest School of Music and Art, WAVE, Van Lang Field House, and McKellar Park Field House) programming, classes, rentals and other facility use scheduled to run from Monday March 16 to Sunday April 5 inclusive, or until further notice. This includes March Break Camps and our After School program. 

We understand that while these program cancellations will create challenges for all our families, they are essential to the well-being of our staff, clients and greater community. As we continue to follow Ottawa Public Health and the City of Ottawa’s expertise, we will keep you informed concerning further developments in our programming and schedules. Please continue to visit our website for more information as it becomes available.

In the coming days, we will be communicating via email with all clients who are impacted by program cancellations on how we will proceed with rescheduling classes and processing of refunds and credits.

Thank you for your patience, and please do your part in keeping yourself and your community healthy:

Following the announcement made by the Ontario Ministry of Education that all publicly funded schools will remain closed for two weeks following March Break, we will be following suit with our afterschool and PD Day programming.

There will be no Before or After Care programming from March 23 to April 3 inclusive. There will be no PD Programming on April 3rd.

Under the recommendations and advice of Ottawa Public Health and the City of Ottawa, our March Break Camps will run as planned.

At this time we have not made any further programming changes.

Updates to follow.

Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information for Clients

(Adapted from communications from the Ottawa Carleton District School Board & Ottawa Public Health)

We appreciate that clients may have questions about the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) and how Dovercourt and Bluesfest School of Music and Art will manage it. 

We are actively following the latest updates and recommendations made by Ottawa Public Health (OPH). We follow guidance on health matters from our Federal, Provincial and local health authorities, including Ottawa Public Health (OPH) and, as a partner of the City of Ottawa, we will always follow all recommendations and health policies of the Ottawa’s Recreation, Cultural and Facility Services department.

We are encouraging staff and contractors to stay home should they feel ill. We have increased our disinfectant cleaning of high touch areas such as handrails, door handles and water fountains throughout the Centre, and we have put reminders around the building regarding proper handwashing techniques recommended by Ottawa Public Health. We are also supplying additional hand sanitizer in more locations for staff and client use.

At this time, there are no changes to our programming, rentals or access to facilities.

We ask that all clients take the time to make themselves aware and be respectful of all recommendations made by Ottawa Public Health with regards to Novel Coronavirus.

Please check Ottawa Public Health’s Novel Coronavirus web page for information on the virus, regular updates, and other tips and resources on how best to prevent the spread of germs.

Stay informed by monitoring the Province of Ontario’s novel coronavirus web page, which is updated every weekday at 10:30 a.m. ET.

We also recommend you download the Ministry of Health’s information sheet about the 2019 Novel Coronavirus.

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