May 21, 2021

To the ECTA circus community: 

As many of you may have heard, King County’s Health Officer, Dr. Jeff Duchin, released a new mask directive for indoor spaces on May 20th. In an effort to stay proactive and in compliance, Emerald City Trapeze Arts reached out to the Washington State Department of Health and to the King County Department of Health to clarify what constitutes a state-approved method to ensure that anybody removing their mask in a public space has been fully vaccinated, and to make sure that our protocols are consistent with these methods.

We received responses from both the Washington and King County Departments of Health that our current Covid-19 protocols are in compliance with the latest directive from King County while also being in alignment with the CDC and state guidelines. 

Our goal is to keep our students, staff, and community safe. We have maintained classes at a level of less than 25% capacity, well below the recommended 50% capacity limit. We’ve also invested in a HEPA grade air filtration system that will clean and circulate the air every 4 hours, and all equipment continues to be sanitized between sessions. Our staff are continuing to ask students to wash their hands upon entry and requiring proof of full vaccination for any individuals who wish to remove their mask while indoors. 

We are striving to maintain a smooth transition through all of the changes that will occur as we find our new normal. We are grateful for your patience and understanding as we navigate the guidelines.

As always, please feel free to reach out to me directly if you have any questions, comments, or feedback. You can reach me at: [email protected]

See you in the air! 

Sarah Brownstein

 


May 17, 2021

To the ECTA circus community: 

Starting today, ECTA will no longer require fully vaccinated staff or students to wear masks inside the studio. We will be requiring proof of vaccination for all staff and students who wish to remove their masks while inside Emerald City Trapeze Arts. This is a one time thing — please bring a copy of your vaccination card, and we’ll capture the information in our booking system.

The shift in our masking and social distancing protocol is in accordance with CDC Guidelines and corresponding announcements from Governor Inslee. The safety of our students and staff is our greatest priority. In addition to continuing to align the studio with the CDC Guidelines, we have maintained classes at a level of less than 25% capacity, well below the recommended 50% capacity limit. We’ve also invested in a HEPA grade air filtration system that will clean and circulate the air every 4 hours. 

We understand that not everyone is comfortable removing their mask at this time, even if they are fully vaccinated. We ask our entire community to showcase support and understanding for all individuals.

Please wear a mask if: 

  • You want to
  • You did not bring proof of vaccination
  • You are not fully vaccinated

What counts as fully vaccinated? 

  • Moderna: Two weeks after second dose
  • Pfizer: Two weeks after second dose
  • Johnson & Johnson: Two weeks after vaccine 

What is considered proof? 

  • Vaccination card

Frequently Asked Questions: 

What happens if I forget my vaccine card?

  • You will be kindly asked to wear a mask until proof of vaccination has been uploaded to our system. 

What if I am unable to get the vaccine?

  • At this time, we request that you wear a mask inside the studio. If you have questions or concerns, please reach out to our staff directly. 

What if I have a photo of my vaccination card– does that count?

  • If you have a photo that clearly shows your name and the date of your second vaccination, it can count as proof of vaccination. 

As always, please feel free to reach out to me directly if you have any questions, comments, or feedback. You can reach me at: [email protected]

See you in the air,

Sarah Brownstein

 

May 14, 2021

To the ECTA circus community: 

Change is happening very quickly all around us. I am reminded of one of my favorite Piglet quotes from Winnie the Pooh: “It is hard to be brave,” said Piglet, sniffling slightly, “when you’re only a Very Small Animal.” I happen to be among the smaller human animals, so it resonates with me in particular, but many of us may be feeling the need for some bravery right now as the world begins to open up. (Others of us may be chomping at the bit!)

Beginning on Monday, May 17th, we will no longer require fully vaccinated staff or students to wear masks inside the studio. The change in our Covid-19 Protocols is in accordance with CDC Guidelines and corresponding announcements from Governor Inslee. The devil is always in the details, and we’re working our way through those as we speak. Until we’ve got all our ducks in a row, we’ll stick to wearing masks and keeping our distance. (I’m trying to pack as many idioms into this paragraph as possible!)

Stay tuned for details about our upcoming Photo Challenge starting on June 1st! This will be the first in a monthly series of competitions that will crown our students with eternal circus bragging rights!

And keep your eyes peeled for more information on our changing COVID restrictions before our Monday classes. As always, please feel free to reach out to me directly if you have any questions, comments, or feedback. You can reach me at: [email protected]

See you in the air! 

Sarah Brownstein


May 5, 2021

To the ECTA circus community: 

This is my first missive to you all in my new role! In the last few weeks, I’ve spent half my time running as fast as I can to get things done, and the other half of my time listening. What I’ve heard loud and clear is that you all want more communication from us. This I can do, though be forewarned: once I get started, I can be hard to shut up! My plan going forward is to keep listening to whatever is on your minds (ahem, as it relates to circus arts and ECTA). Feel free to send your thoughts and questions along ([email protected]), and I’ll share my thoughts on some of your queries in these little missives. 

And so we’re off to the races: You may have heard that King County is at risk for rolling back to Phase 2. There is a two week pause on Washington’s reopening plan to provide additional time for more data collection prior to the state’s official decision on changing county phases. Since our COVID-19 protocols were designed to keep our staff and students extra safe, the good news is that this change won’t have any impact on our class schedules. What’s more — as additional people are getting vaccinated, we’re excited to be able to update a few of our protocols to match CDC guidelines. 

Updating our travel protocols: If you plan on traveling by commercial transportation (plane, train, bus, etc) and are fully vaccinated, we no longer ask that you quarantine or get tested for Covid-19. If you are not yet vaccinated and have traveled by commercial transportation, we request that you quarantine for 7 days upon arrival to the Seattle area and receive a negative Covid-19 test at the end of the 7 days before coming back to the studio. 

For Aerialists: We’ve got ALL NEW HARDWARE and some pretty mats to keep us all safe! Swivels, carabiners, figure 8’s, oh my! Deon has been hard at work getting our new hardware in place for our aerial community, so give him a toe tap or elbow bump when you see him, and take a moment to appreciate the very deliberate arrangement of the mats with yellow lines. 

For Flyers: Will we ever be able to catch again? I sure hope so!! We want to bring back catching as much as you do; unfortunately, current guidelines keep us from being able to schedule classes with catching. Here’s why: our current phase requirements include a 30 minute break between classes to allow ample time for the air to clear out and for the sanitization of equipment. These required breaks and limits on how long a person can be in the space have resulted in shortened classes so that we can get as many of you up and flying as possible. Our instructors don’t think it’s a good idea, or even a viable option, to cram catching into an hour-long class. That said, once we are moving confidently through Phase 3, we will announce additional details about catching! 

We are requiring all staff to be vaccinated. I hope it’s clear by now that we want to keep our students and staff safe. To protect our circus community at large, we are requiring staff to be vaccinated. (This is also part of our effort to get back to catching!)

New Merch! That’s right, we’ve got some super cute new tank tops for men and women, just in time for summer, and an ECTA tote bag that is a must have. Speaking of which, I must have it, and I don’t yet! Come and get your new merch next time you come in for a class!

That’s all for now, but seriously, if you have questions or ideas, or want to tell us how great we are, feel free to email me at [email protected], and I will get back to you as quickly as possible.

See you in the air!

Sarah Brownstein

 


 

February 6, 2021

Greeting Circus Family, 

We deeply value the health and safety of our staff and students, and we are thrilled to be opening on Monday, February 8th. Please note that we have added new travel guidelines that will assist with keeping our community safe during these unprecedented times. 

NEW Travel Guidelines: 

If you plan on traveling to the studio from outside of Washington state by commercial transportation (plane, train, bus, etc), you will be required to quarantine for 14 days and provide documentation of a negative Covid-19 test after the completion of the 14 day quarantine prior to entering the studio. No exceptions. 

While we understand that this is a big ask, we do so out of respect for our community. Our goal is to continue flattening the curve while ensuring that our staff and students remain safe. 

We look forward to seeing you on Monday, February 8th! 

With Gratitude, 

Shawn Hammer

 


February 4, 2021

Greetings Circus Family, 

We have some wonderful news! Emerald City Trapeze Arts will be reopening on Monday, February 8th. We know everyone is excited and desperate to get back to getting your circus on, and we’re right there with you! 

We are continuing to prioritize the health and safety of staff and students. The current Covid-19 case rate is still extremely high, and we believe that it’s important to make careful decisions when it comes to bringing people together in an indoor space. 

In order maintain the health and safety of our staff and students, we are taking the following actions: 

  • New Aerial Sessions: 
    • Emerald City Trapeze Arts is excited to introduce Aerial Sessions! Each session will include 4 classes which will take place over the course of 4 weeks. You and your pod of fellow students will build upon your current foundation each week with an emphasis on flow, endurance and strength training. With a consistent structure and plenty of examples, students will gain a better understanding of how to transition between skills in order to create a more intimate relationship with their apparatus. We will be offering a variety of sessions, including Aerial Silks and Rope.
  • Check-in Protocol:
    • Students and staff will be checked daily for symptoms and elevated temperatures. If you are experiencing any cold or flu-like symptoms, we kindly ask that you reschedule your class to protect our community. 
  • Sanitization Stations:
    • We have equipped our studio with sanitization stations. Please wash your hands prior to class and sanitize frequently. 
  • Reduced Class Size and Length: 
    • Class size will be limited to comply with the Washington State regulations for gyms. Flying Trapeze will be capped at 5 students. Aerial classes will be capped at 4 students and Ground / Fitness classes will be a maximum of 5 students. In addition, we will be limiting our class length in order to reduce potential exposure time. 
  • Equipment Sanitization: 
    • All equipment will be cleaned and sanitized prior to class. We ask that you help our community maintain the space by sanitizing equipment that was touched between or during classes. 

Our BIG ask. We have been given the greenlight to reopen under the new gym requirements set forth by the state; however, we need our entire community to commit to keeping each other safe on an individual level. We ask that you limit exposure to people outside of your household, avoid any unnecessary Covid-19 exposure, and maintain social distancing at all times. If you have travel plans in the near future, please plan to give yourself time to quarantine and get a Covid-19 test. 

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • When can I book a class? 
    • Classes will resume on February 8th; however, you are welcome to begin booking into classes starting today, February 4th. 
  • What if I’m feeling sick prior or during class?
    • We kindly ask that you reschedule your class by calling our front desk. If you have symptoms, please stay home and avoid contact with other students.

Please feel free to email us directly with any questions at: [email protected] 

Looking forward to seeing all of you in person! 

With gratitude and excitement, 

Shawn Hammer  

 


January 12th – Update

Greetings Circus Family, 

We know everyone is excited and desperate to get back to getting your circus on – we’re right there with you! 

Based on current requirements from the state, we’re planning to reopen as soon as our region enters Phase 2 of Governor Inslee’s Healthy Washington Road to Recovery plan. 

We are continuing to place a high prioritization on the health and safety of staff and students. The current Covid-19 case rate is higher than it has been during the entire course of the pandemic, and we believe that it’s important to make careful decisions when it comes to bringing people together in an indoor space.

Please feel free to email us with any questions at: [email protected] 

Looking forward to seeing all of your faces, hearing endless laughter, and witnessing new milestones soon! 

With gratitude and excitement, 

Shawn Hammer  


December 11th Update

Greetings Circus Family!

We hope you are all having a wonderful and safe holiday season. Two days ago, Governor Jay Inslee extended the restrictions from December 11th to January 4th across Washington state with the hope it will reduce the Covid-19 spike during the holidays. While we are saddened by this news, we are in full support of keeping our beautiful and vibrant community healthy during this difficult time. Words cannot describe our immense gratitude to this community.

If you are looking for special gifts this holiday season, we encourage you to consider giving Emerald City Trapeze Arts classes or class cards – give the gift of learning to fly or finding a new passion!

We look back fondly on past holidays that were filled with canons of golden glitter and classes decked out in ugly holiday sweaters! We are excited for when we can once again open our doors and celebrate with each of you! 

Stay tuned on our social channels for updates! 

With Gratitude, 
Shawn Hammer

 


 

 

November 15th Update

Circus Faithful,

On the heels of my last update, Governor Inslee announced this morning that we need to tighten up our COVID-19 protocols once again in order to help flatten the curve. The new state protocols go into effect on Monday, November 16th at midnight. Given the number of new Covid-19 cases around the country as well as right here in Washington, I think many of us had a feeling this was coming. 

In accordance with the new state guidelines, we will be closing the studio temporarily to follow the mandate. Classes will run through the end of the day on November 16th, and the studio will be closed beginning on November 17th. The current restrictions are scheduled through December 14th; however, I think we can reasonably expect it to continue through the end of the year and possibly into January.

You can read Inslee’s press release regarding the upcoming 4-week closure at: https://www.governor.wa.gov/news-media/inslee-announces-statewide-restrictions-four-weeks 

The specific restrictions are outlined by the Medium at:
https://medium.com/wagovernor/inslee-announces-statewide-restrictions-for-four-weeks-c0b7da87d34e

Will classes be canceled? What happens to my credits?

We will be cancelling classes and putting credits back on your accounts over the next week – please give us a few days to get this accomplished, our team is working diligently to quickly adjust to the new requirements.

While we’re closed, we are focusing on studio improvements and upgrades while looking for creative ways to help you all stay in shape and involved! Stay tuned for exciting updates! 

With the holidays on the horizon, we ask that you continue to help flatten the curve so that we, along with many of your favorite businesses, can reopen our doors soon. We look forward to reopening the studio as soon as we are able to do so! 

We truly appreciate your continued support and understanding during this unpredictable time. Keeping our community safe, healthy, and informed means everything to us — we are all in this together! If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to our team. 

With Gratitude,

Shawn Hammer

November 15, 2020

 


 

November 13, 2020

Salutations Circus Family,

We are excited to say that we’ve been reopened for a solid month now! It feels incredible to have students, laughter, and joy filling the studio. Our COVID-19 protocols have been working well, and we’re continuing to evolve to ensure that we’re being as safe as possible while making things easier for you and our staff at the same time.

Based on student requests, starting in January, we’re going to shift some classes to the evening hours to make classes more accessible. The new schedule will be published in the next couple weeks, and you’ll be able to start signing up for your favorite classes!

We look forward to a time when longer classes with more students will be running so that we can feel all of your magical energy filling the studio! Unfortunately, that isn’t going to happen in 2020.

On November 10th, the state of Washington published the 20th Situation Report on COVID-19 transmission across the state and, like the rest of the country, the outlook isn’t what we’d hoped for — new cases are spiking throughout our region. You can read the report here: https://covid.idmod.org/data/WA_Situation_Report_20_COVID-19_transmission_across_Washington_State.pdf

Just yesterday, Governor and Trudi Inslee urged us to not gather with people outside our households right now. In the coming days, we will learn about new guidelines to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 in Washington that may or, may not, impact our operations. You can watch the video here: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=1496739090521578

In light of the sharp increases in infection rates and hospitalizations across most age groups, we’re going to continue with the smaller, shorter class format. We value your health and safety. We’re monitoring requirements to ensure that Emerald City Trapeze Arts is aligned with or more conservative than the safest recommended practices. We are doing our part to reduce the spread.

As we move into the holiday season, we know you will be drawn to family, friends, food, and drink. We have a couple requests to make of you to help ensure we can continue offering the classes that you love:

  • Keep following COVID-19 safety guidelines! We know you’re tired of them, we are too. Right now though, it’s the best defense we have.
  • Avoid spending time indoors with people outside your pod. If you do spend time indoors with people who have been outside your “pod” for the past few months (Thanksgiving, Bodhi Day, Chanukah, Winter Solstice/Yule, Christmas, Kwanza, New Years Eve/Ōmisoka, etc…), give yourself a few extra days before you come in for your next class to make sure you haven’t been exposed. We want to see you, but more importantly, we want to keep seeing everyone healthy.
  • If you plan on traveling to visit family during the holiday season, we ask that you take extra precautions and to take a few additional days prior to returning to classes.
  • Avoid gathering in restaurants and bars – We know this has been a long slog for everyone and our ability to isolate is stretched thin. As a small business, we understand the struggle that your favorite haunts (I know, we’re likely one of them!) are going through first hand and know they need our support to survive. If we don’t isolate though, we’ll be in for another round of shutdowns and that will result in more small businesses having to close permanently. Order take-out or dress for the weather and sit outside, but please, continue to take this seriously. Look out for yourselves and your neighbors.
  • Monitor carefully for symptoms – during the winter months, we all get sniffles, but we ask that if you have any signs of cold or flu-like symptoms to rebook your class.
  • If you are planning on visiting Seattle over the holidays, we kindly ask that you don’t schedule classes with us if you’re traveling to the area via commercial transportation. While we will miss seeing you, the risk of transmission inside a plane, train, or long bus ride is just too high at the moment.

I look forward to seeing you in your next class, accomplishing goals that you thought were unreachable!

With Gratitude,
Shawn


September 21, 2020

Covid-19 Operating Plan

Dear Circus Family, 

We are beyond excited to announce our reopening date of October 9, 2020! We are so grateful for your unwavering support and relentless passion. Emerald City Trapeze Arts is committed to the safety of the students, staff, and performers who utilize the space for classes and training. We truly value each of you, and we look forward to seeing you hit new milestones, explore new passions, and dive head first into your next adventure! 

As part of our reopening plan, we are focusing on creating a safe environment while also providing the highest quality instruction and experience for each student. During our temporary closure, we have been hard at working putting together some fantastic new updates for you to enjoy! 

Exciting New Studio Improvements: 

  • New aerial training points, hardware, and apparatuses
  • New handstand wall with inspirational paintings and designs by Isra
  • New booking software! Book your classes on the go with our integrated booking software and app. With a better user-interface and a seamless design, you will be able to stay up-to-date on notifications and your upcoming classes!
  • Added safety protocols include but aren’t limited to: 
    • Upon entry students and staff will be checked for Covid-19 symptoms, temperature checked, hands will be sanitized, and masks will be in place.
    • Class size will be reduced to ensure social distancing, and we will have staggered start times to reduce congestion around the front desk and on our walking paths. 
    • Students and staff will follow one-way walkways that reduce congestion and ensure socially-distanced travel through the studio. 

Frequently Asked Questions: 

  • When can I book a class? 
    • We are switching booking systems currently. Stay tuned for an update regarding when you can book on our new platform! It will be prior to October 8th. 
  • I have a membership and student credits – will they switch over with the new platform? 
    • Yes! All student credits and memberships will be maintained through the platform switch. 
  • Will open Gym be available?
    • Unfortunately, we will not be able to host Open Gym quite yet due to the space constraints within our facility. 
  • What is the current size limit on classes?
    • Current class size is regulated to 5 students for Flying Trapeze and 4 students for Aerial, Ground, and in-person Conditioning classes.
  • Will you be offering classes online?
    • Yes! We will be offering live-streamed circus conditioning classes. 
  • Will private classes be offered? 
    • Not at this time. We’ll update here when we’re ready to start offering private classes again.

Additional updates will be released as information becomes available! Please stay tuned! 

If you have any specific questions please submit them via our Google Form! We will be making frequent update videos, and we will do our best to either address your questions via our video updates or via direct communication. Google Form Link: https://forms.gle/fkRuKAxUXzxAdM8h7

We look forward to seeing you on October 9th! 

With Gratitude, 

Shawn Hammer 

September 21, 2020