HAWTHORNE, NJ - On Saturday, May 2, Governor Phil Murphy's executive order allowed the state parks to reopen, and county parks, such as Goffle Brook Park, to open at the discretion of county authorities. Goffle Brook Park, closed since April 7, was thereby reopened to the public with some limitations. " It will be for passive recreation only," Mayor Goldberg said. "The fields, the bathrooms and the playgrounds are closed. Parking will be limited and social distancing and masks are requested."
The pre-closure signs reappeared, warning Passaic County residents to keep distant from one another and avoid congregating in groups. Governor Phil Murphy had said that it was up to residents to keep their parks open.
New Jersey's official Twitter was a little more blunt but conveyed the message in authentic Garden State style.
"People were being very considerate of each other," TAPinto Hawthorne contributor Judy Kopitar said. "When walking towards each other they would leave the path to a grassy part to make room to pass each other safely."
At Arnold's Pond, the warm weather was bringing out both people as well as animals. "I was very pleased to see that at Arnold's Pond safe distancing was in effect," Kopitar said.
From the state level, the New Jersey State Parks issued a statement on Sunday. "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." They said that several locations had been "overrun" in New Jersey, including Barnegat Lighthouse State Park, Bulls Island Recreation Area, Delaware & Raritan Canal State Park, Hacklebarney State Park, Round Valley Recreation Area, Wharton State Forest, Wawayanda State Park, and Worthington State Forest. "Remember," the statement read, "COVID-19 is not gone."
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