The Jersey Shore is might "open for business" this summer, but it won't be business as usual.
As the state continues to battle the novel coronavirus pandemic and takes measures to slow the spread of COVID-19, officials are cautiously optimistic that residents can enjoy the summer safely if they also abide by social distancing guidelines.
Governor Phil Murphy announced last week that Garden State lakes and beaches would be open in time for Memorial Day weekend.
"There's going to be a limitation on capacity," Murphy said. "How a beach manages it is going to be up to a local municipality. A lot of them will sell just fewer day tags, for example. Second, strong enforcement of social distancing. Obviously, not before your own family, but in between. Thirdly, strong encouragement to wear masks. [We're] not going to make you do it, but that's a game-changer in terms of this virus."
Nearly 11,000 New Jerseyans have succumbed to complications from COVID-19 and the state's battle with it is far from over. Murphy added that he hopes people continue taking the pandemic seriously and understand why they might not be able to get on the beach right away.
"Lastly, if everybody could be a little bit Zen, particularly when the weather gets really good and warm, we'll probably have a supply/demand mismatch [in terms of who can get on the beach]," the governor noted. "And I would just ask everybody to be patient, whether it's on the shore or one of our great lakes. I think if we all do the above, we're going to have a good summer on the shore. It might not be exactly what we're used to, but it's gonna be a summer on the shore and we're committed to delivering that."
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