Parks and Beaches “Overrun” Claims Media, NJ Park Service, Public Disagrees

TRENTON, NJ – The New Jersey State Park Service claims several parks and beaches were “overrun” Saturday and Sunday after being reopened this weekend by Governor Phil Murphy.

“REMEMBER, COVID-19 IS NOT GONE,” the service posted on Social media. “In order to keep parks open and all visitors a safe distance from one another, visit close to home, mask up, and make your stay short.”

The parks also added a two-hour limit to park access, “Leave your chairs and coolers home when visiting your local state park or forest,” the department said. “Keep your stay short — 2 hours maximum — as bathrooms are closed and others would like to visit the park too.”

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According to the executive order signed by the governor, no time limits were set on park access.  The order allows State parks and forests to open to the public for passive recreation, including fishing, hunting, boating, canoeing, hiking, walking, running or jogging, biking, birding, and horseback riding.  Picnic areas, playgrounds, exercise stations and equipment, chartered watercraft services and rentals, swimming, pavilions, restrooms, and other buildings and facilities, such as visitor centers, interpretive centers, and interior historical sites, shall remain closed at this time. To limit physical interaction, the State parks and forests must implement reasonable restrictions that include:

  • Limiting parking to 50% of maximum capacity and prohibiting parking in undesignated areas;
  • Prohibiting picnics;
  • Requiring social distancing to be practiced except with immediate family members, caretakers, household members, or romantic partners; and
  • Banning organized or contact activities or sports; and gatherings of any kind.
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Thank you for doing your part to keep your social distance while enjoying parks.