The Sport Information Resource Centre
The Sport Information Resource Centre

March 24, 2020: Volleyball Canada’s 2020 Nationals tournaments, scheduled for May in Edmonton, and 14U events in Halifax, Ottawa and Abbotsford, BC, are now officially cancelled due the COVID-19 pandemic.

The health of participants and the community was the priority in making this difficult announcement.

“As the pandemic evolved it became clear that measures such as bans on large gatherings, social distancing and travel restrictions would continue through May and potentially beyond,” said Mark Eckert, president and CEO of Volleyball Canada. “This was a joint decision with our partner Edmonton Events, and although we are disappointed to have to cancel this year’s events, the welfare of participants and fans is our greatest concern at all times.”

Volleyball Canada also recognizes that provincial competitions have been greatly affected as well as clubs’ training ability due to social distancing and facility closures.

“We understand how hard these young athletes have worked all year to reach Nationals and applaud their dedication and love for the sport,” said Eckert.  “We support the efforts of the provinces, clubs and individuals who are following the instructions of health authorities to stop the spread of COVID-19.”

All concurrent and events related to Nationals are also not running as scheduled, including the NORCECA U20 (women) and U21 (men) tournaments, which were to be held May 10 to 20. Volleyball Canada will attempt to reschedule the NORCECA events later in the season if coronavirus restrictions on travel and mass gatherings are removed.

Volleyball Canada thanks its partners including Edmonton Events, the city of Edmonton, the province of Alberta, as well all of its corporate partners and the hosts of the 14U tournaments. 

“Volleyball Canada has been a valued partner of Edmonton Events for many years, and though we are disappointed the 2020 Super Nationals won’t take place, we fully support the decision to cancel due to the extraordinary circumstances of COVID-19. Hosting these types of national sporting events is what makes Edmonton such a dynamic host city, and we can’t wait to welcome Volleyball Canada, athletes and fans here again for many future events,” said Maggie Davison, Vice-President, Edmonton Tourism, a division of Edmonton Economic Development Corporation.
 
The Edmonton Expo Centre, site of Nationals 2018 and planned Super Nationals 2020 location, is currently being used as an emergency facility during the crisis, including housing and medical facilities for that city’s vulnerable population.  

“I would like to thank everyone for their understanding while staff and partners carefully considered all potential outcomes,” said Kevin Boyles, Chair of the Board of Directors, Volleyball Canada. “Volleyball will be back, and we look forward to working with our key partners and sponsors in the future when it’s safe to play tournaments again.”
 
With thousands of participants and their friends and family having already made plans and an investment to attend, we ask for patience during the refund process.
 
Be sure to visit the Special Advisory section of the Nationals website for further details on the cancellations process. Updates will be provided as they become available.

Please see Volleyball Canada’s web site for other cancellations, closures and postponements:
https://volleyball.ca/en/news/volleyball-canada-update-covid-19
As well as tips for athletes dealing with uncertainty:
https://volleyball.ca/en/news/responding-to-uncertainty-during-coronavirus
For young people who are struggling during this crisis, please see this link to Kids Help Phone.
https://kidshelpphone.ca/get-info/were-here-for-you-during-covid-19-novel-coronavirus/

Volleyball Canada media contact:
Jackie Skender 613 794 7676 (media only please)
jskender@volleyball.ca