Upcoming changes to operations and memberships

Update as of Friday, January 8: Campus has determined that Emeritus and Retired members will not have access to the Safer Badgers app and therefore will not be able to access our buildings. Campus is expected to revisit building access for non-faculty and staff members in early March. We will send updates via email as we know more. 

In January, UW-Madison will launch an updated COVID-19 health and safety program for the spring semester. The two main components of this new program are expanded testing with rapid results and a new app, Safer Badgers, which students, faculty, and staff will use to participate in testing and to access campus facilities and services. 

The Badger Badge, a feature within the app, will serve as a virtual access pass for entry into campus buildings, including the Nicholas Recreation Center, Shell, and Nielsen Tennis Stadium. UW-Madison students, faculty, and staff will be able to use the app and the Badger Badge. 

Members who are not current UW-Madison students, faculty, and staff will not have access to the Badger Badge and therefore will not be allowed in our facilities or other campus buildings until approved by campus. (Emeritus/Retired members, please see below.*) We expect campus to reassess community access to buildings in late February or early March and will reach out at that time. 

Below you will find important updates based on these changes. As you know, the pandemic has required all of us to practice patience and flexibility as plans and protocols change frequently. We understand this announcement may seem to come in the eleventh hour; please be assured it is always our goal to communicate as early, often, and transparently as possible. If you have questions, we encourage you to send us an email at hello@recwell.wisc.edu or connect with us on Instagram or Facebook

Hours of operation 

To prevent a spike in cases at the start of the semester, campus operations and programming will be limited to allow time for everyone to comply with the testing program. We have updated our January hours of operation to accommodate this change.

  • The Nicholas Recreation Center, Shell, and Nielsen Tennis Stadium will close for Winter Break as scheduled on Wednesday, December 23 and remain closed until Tuesday, January 19. 
  • Starting January 19, we will encourage proof of the Badger Badge app to enter our facilities. It will be required for entry starting January 25.
  • During the week of January 19 – 23, we will have limited hours at the Nicholas Recreation Center, Shell, and Nielsen Tennis Stadium. Spring semester hours will begin at all facilities on Monday, January 25.
  • The Shell ice rink and Courts 1-4 at Nielsen Tennis Stadium are campus testing sites and will be closed for the spring semester. 
  • View our hours of operation here

Lockers

  • We will contact locker holders by the end of January with more information regarding current locker rentals. 
  • If you need to retrieve items during our closure between January 4 -18, please contact us at hello@recwell.wisc.edu and we can set up a pick-up time with you. We will respond to all requests starting Monday, January 4.

Changes to memberships 

  • Faculty and staff members will continue to have access to our facilities starting January 19 and must show the Badger Badge upon entry. Please review campus’ testing requirements for faculty and staff here
  • *Campus is still exploring how to grant Emeritus/Retired employees access to the Safer Badgers app and therefore whether or not they will be able to access campus buildings. We expect to know more in early January and will reach out when we have more information.
  • All other membership types (2020 Grads, Alumni, UW Hospital, Community, and Household Adults) will not have access to our facilities until at least early March. As soon as we have a timeline for when we can welcome you back to our facilities, we will let you know. 

What this means for recurring memberships: 

  • Since our facilities are closed until January 19, we will not charge any recurring memberships in January. Faculty/staff memberships will resume monthly charges starting on February 1, 2021. If you would like to cancel your recurring monthly membership, please complete this form by January 31, 2021.
  • On December 31, 2020, we will cancel all recurring membership types that are unable to access our facilities: 2020 Grads, Alumni, UW Hospital, Community, and Household Adults. No further charges will occur. 
  • We will also cancel Affiliate Group Fitness Passes on December 31, 2020 for those who are unable to access our facilities. If you’d like to continue group fitness classes in February (classes are free in January), we have a Virtual Group Fitness Pass available for just $12/month. 

What this means for duration-based memberships: 

  • For faculty and staff members, we will automatically extend your membership 16 days due to our delayed opening in January. No further action is needed on your part. 
  • For 2020 Grads, Alumni, UW Hospital, Community, and Household Adult members, you have two options: 
    1. We can provide you a refund for the remaining days of your membership. Please email hello@recwell.wisc.edu requesting a partial refund of your membership before February 1, 2021. Any refund requests received on or after February 1, 2021 will not be provided; your membership will be extended for the amount of days that this change is in effect. 
    2. We will extend your membership for the amount of days this change is in effect. No further action is needed on your part for this option.
  • We will also cancel Affiliate Group Fitness Passes on December 31, 2020 for those who are unable to access our facilities. If you’d like to continue group fitness classes in February (classes are free in January), we have a Virtual Group Fitness Pass available for just $12/month. 

We know this year has been full of many changes and are grateful for your patience and flexibility as we continue to pivot. To our non-faculty and staff members, we understand this may be disappointing news and we sincerely apologize. We look forward to the day we can welcome you back into our spaces and will reach out with updates as we have them. 

Please continue to wear a face covering, maintain physical distance, avoid gatherings with people you don’t live with, and wash your hands often.

For more information about campus’ new health and safety program, visit https://covidresponse.wisc.edu/spring-semester-2021-overview/.