NEW JERSEY - Governor Phil Murphy announced at his Wednesday press briefing that New Jersey state and county parks along with golf courses many reopen on Saturday, May 2. State and county parks have been closed since April 7. Restrooms, picnic areas, playgrounds and visitor centers will not reopen along with the parks. However, park visitors will be allowed to run, hike, bike, fish and kayak. The April 7 closing came on the heels of state and county park staff noticing a large influx of patrons not adhering to social distancing guidelines. Many of the Garden State's county and state parks also had an increase in out-of-state visitors.
While Murphy did not say that park visitors must wear masks, he did "strongly recommend" people utilizing state and county parks cover their faces. The governor also stressed that park visitors must adhere to social distancing guidelines. The decision to reopen local parks rests with each municipality. Earlier this week, Jersey City began to allow its residents to begin using the city's parks.
New Jersey residents have been under a stay-at-home order since March 21. During his press briefing, Murphy did say that if state and county park visitors did not follow social distancing guidelines, the parks would be closed once again. While other states have been preparing to ease their stay-at-home restrictions in May, Murphy said on Tuesday that New Jersey is "weeks away" from reopening.