FREEHOLD, NJ — Monmouth County parks and golf courses are open, welcoming visitors for the first time in nearly a month.

After Gov. Murphy announced on April 29 that state parks would reopen at sunrise on May 2 — and counties had the option to open their parks and golf courses as well — Monmouth officials were among the first to applaud the decision.

“I am glad that the authority over the decision on whether or not the Monmouth County parks are open has been put back in the hands of the freeholders,” said Freeholder Director Thomas A. Arnone. “The entire board has always felt, throughout this pandemic, that our parks are essential for the mental health and well-being of our residents. We vowed to open them as soon as we were able to, and that is exactly what we are doing.”

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The parks are open during their regular posted hours, which are available at www.monmouthcountyparks.com, and parking will be limited to half capacity. Park rangers will monitor visitor loads and will temporarily close parks if parking lots become too full.

Social distancing will continue to be mandated, and all visitors are encouraged to wear face coverings, according to Murphy's latest order

“While we are excited to open the parks, we would like to remind residents to practice social distancing and respect any direction given by the park rangers, when out at the parks, so that we can work on opening up more of these areas in the coming weeks,” Arnone said.

Trails, open lands, beaches, boat ramps (no fee collected), marina, fishing areas, fitness trails, golf courses and disc golf courses are open.

Golf courses will have 16-minute tee time intervals and single rider carts (except for immediate family members). For more details, click here.

Buildings, including restrooms, shelter buildings and picnic pavilions, will remain closed. The following areas will also remain closed:

  • Longstreet Farm, Holmdel
  • Seven Presidents Oceanfront Park’s Skateplex, Long Branch
  • Playgrounds
  • Off-leash dog areas
  • Fishing piers
  • Campgrounds
  • Athletic fields
  • Tennis courts
  • Basketball courts

For a full list of what's open and closed, click here.

“Enjoy the great weather we are supposed to have this weekend, and hopefully will have in the days and weeks to come, by taking a walk, a bike ride, go fishing or play a round of golf,” said Freeholder Lillian G. Burry, county park liaison.  “I would like to thank the park system staff for all of their competence and dedication. Each and every one of them has stepped up to the challenges caused by this pandemic and I commend them for their efforts.”

BELMAR AND LAKE COMO’S MESSAGE: OUT-OF-TOWNERS STAY AWAY

In Belmar and Lake Como, measures will remain in place to keep visitors out of both seashore towns during the coronavirus crisis.

In Belmar, the boardwalk is closed with parking prohibited on the east side of Ocean Avenue and residents-only parking on the west side. The beach is open, but the four beach playgrounds are closed, and dogs are not permitted.

Residents-only parking will be strictly enforced where safety drums with signage have been placed, including in the south section of town near the beach and Lake Como, and along the banks of Silver Lake at Fifth and Sixth Avenues. 

Also closed is Maclearie Park on Route 35, as well as Jane Magovern’s Playground on Eighth Avenue, Mitzi and Emily’s Playground on 15th Avenue and the Ed Brown Playground, next to Maclearie Park along the Shark River.

At Belmar Manutti Marina, personal use of boats and other watercraft is permitted, while chartered watercraft services or rentals are not allowed.

In Lake Como, residents-only parking will be enforced throughout the borough. Vehicles without borough-issued decals face being ticketed. Click on story below for details on the program.

Parking also is prohibited along the banks of Lake Como along North Boulevard. Behrman Park off 18th Avenue, including the ball fields, is closed.

Under Gov Phil Murphy’s latest order, both Belmar and Lake Como also had the option of opening municipal parks. However, as it currently stands, these restrictions in both towns will be in effect until the state of emergency in New Jersey is lifted.

READ MORE: Belmar, Lake Como Alert Visitors to Stay Away with Residents-Only Parking in Effect

 

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