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City OKs partial reopening Monday
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Sport Rite employee Matt Hand pulls tape from the finished lines with business owner Elliott Ladd in the background as the renovation of the last two tennis courts was finished this week.

City officials have approved a partial reopening of amenities beginning this Monday, May 4.

Opening under restrictions will be exercise classes at Three Star Mall, its Wellness Center, outdoor tennis courts, the skate park, and ballfields.

McMinnville’s Board of Mayor and Aldermen met Tuesday night and discussed its reopening plan. 

Gilley Pool, Park Theater and children’s playground areas will remain closed.

Mayor Ben Newman opened the discussion by saying the city should try its best to adhere to the Tennessee Pledge and guidelines established by Gov. Bill Lee.

“I think it’s imperative that the city does its best to adhere to these guidelines and lead by example,” said Newman. “We need to show that we are committed to sticking with what the governor is wanting to do and take all recommendations seriously." 

"We need to encourage all our business partners and people in our community to focus on their safety. We have seven confirmed cases in Warren County now and hopefully, through these guidelines, we can keep those numbers low,” Newman said.

The Wellness Center will reopen Monday at 8 a.m. and follow its normal class schedule with the following guidelines: 

All patrons will have their temperature taken before they are allowed into the Wellness Center or into a class. All persons will a fever of 100.4 or higher will be asked to leave. 

Class sizes held at 15 participants. Indoor cycling will have a limit of six.

Some Wellness Center equipment will be removed to make it possible for patrons to remain six feet apart while exercising.

Only 15 patrons will be allowed at a time inside the Wellness Center.

Patrons are encouraged to use only one piece of equipment at time and clean it with provided cleaner and towels after use.

Staff will work to continuously clean equipment on top of patron efforts to clean equipment after use. 

Starting Tuesday, May 5, the Wellness Center will close for one hour each day to allow for deeper cleaning. 

Hours: Monday thru Thursday: open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 2 to 8 p.m. 

Friday and Saturday open 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2 to 4 p.m.  

Classes will begin at 8:15 a.m. Minor class changes can be found on our webpage at Along with classes being limited to 15 participants, they will also be shortened to 45 minutes long, giving staff time to clean equipment between classes.

Also beginning Tuesday, reservation for classes and hour blocks of time in the wellness center can be made by calling 473-1212 the day before. 

Silver Sneaker classes will resume. Alderman Rachel Kirby expressed concerns for Silver Sneakers and those individuals being an at-risk group. 

“At some point, there has to be a little bit of self-accountability,” said Newman. “If people know they are at-risk, then they don’t need to participate.”

Outdoor tennis courts will reopen. 

“We just re-did two of our outdoor tennis courts and there’s not a lot of people who will be in close proximity to each other on a tennis court,” said Newman. “I think it’s getting to be beautiful weather and people are wanting to get out and exercise. That would be a good exercise for people to do, either one-on-one or two-on-two. They will be spread out.” 

Parks and Recreation director Scott McCord was more inclined to leave the skate park closed. However, officials decided to reopen it, limit it to 10 people at one time, and urge those using the area to adhere to social distancing. 

The city’s park officer will be instructed to patrol the area. 

Ballfields will reopen. However, they are limited to 10 people and practice sessions only, no organized team sports. 

“I feel like if we limit the number of people on the ballfields and batting cages, we can open those up as well,” said Alderman Steve Harvey. “All the leagues are shut down. There won’t be any leagues until the end of summer probably. These kids and parents, I’m sure, would like to get out there and take batting practice. I think we can open those as long as we limit it.”

All participants in city programs are encouraged to take their temperature at home before coming to the mall, to wear personal protective equipment, and ask themselves these questions: 1) Have you been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19? 2) Are you experiencing a cough, shortness of breath, or sore throat? 3) Have you had a fever in the last 48 hours?