ISLAND BEACH STATE PARK, NJ – The beach at Island Beach State Park was nearly deserted on April 7th, 2020 when New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy declared all state parks were to be shut down because of violations of his social distancing laws.
Now, the only people in our parks are the New Jersey State Park Police, patrolling the grounds to fine and remove violators.
“New Jersey State Park Police will patrol park areas to ensure the public is following the Governor’s directives to stay home to help limit the spread of COVID-19,” Murphy said.
Island Beach State Park is a 10-mile long peninsula of sandy beaches, dunes, and bayfront.
Not only was Island Beach essentially deserted, but it’s one of the few state parks that can strictly regulate the number of visitors at the front gate. The park is separated into “areas” that are far apart from each other to prevent large crowds. Parking lots can be monitored and those with beach passes have a long stretch of inaccessible beach that is too far for walk-in traffic to reach.