Nearly all American sporting events, from high school to professional, have been canceled for the foreseeable future. For sports fans, it will make for a pretty dull spring.

The National Basketball Association and the National Hockey League suspended their games for the time being, given the spread of the coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) across the United States and Canada.

Major League Baseball suspended spring training in Arizona and Florida, and pushed back its opening day by two weeks due to the spread of the coronavirus. Many more professional sports followed.

Meanwhile, the NCAA canceled its men’s and women’s basketball tournaments, and most conference tournaments were called off.

In Wisconsin, Gov. Tony Evers’ executive order issued Friday, March 13, closes all public and private schools, and suspends all school spring sports activities extending from Wednesday, March 18, until Monday, April 6.

The executive order is in response to the information available regarding COVID-19 and to prevent, suppress and control the disease.

The WIAA has updated its athletic participation limitations to adhere to the executive order as stated on the WIAA’s Infectious Disease option on the Health webpage.

Consistent with Gov. Evers’ announcement Friday, all school training, practices, scrimmages and contests are suspended. In addition, schools and coaches may not bring students together or be involved with students during this time period for any extracurricular or athletic purposes, which includes practices and other instructional/organizational purposes.

Coaches may provide individual workouts virtually, but shall not encourage or organize their team assembling to practice.

The announcement comes on the heels of the WIAA ending the Girls Basketball State Tournament in Green Bay after the first day last Thursday. The WIAA Boys Basketball Tournament, set for this Thursday through Saturday in Madison, was also canceled. Luckily, the State Hockey Tournament and State Wrestling Tournaments were held before COVID-19 moved into the state.

Other local sports and activities are being affected. The Eagle River Area Chamber of Commerce announced Monday it was canceling Journeys running and walking events set for May 9. Other chamber events will be evaluated in three to four weeks.

“This has not been an easy decision, but one we needed to make considering the safety and health of our community, our members and visitors,” said chamber Executive Director Kim Emerson.

It could be a tough stretch for sports fans and athletes, but the well-being of the family, friends and neighbors is more important at this time.