If you open it, they will come. At a news conference yesterday, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis gave the green light for some beaches and parks to reopen in the Sunshine State if it can be done safely, with distancing guidelines remaining in place.
Almost immediately, some beaches in northern Florida were opened and, perhaps predictably, people flocked to them.
Jacksonville Beach became the first beach in the country to open. The city’s mayor, Lenny Curry, opened Duval County beaches, including Jacksonville Beach, Neptune Beach and Atlantic Beach, with restricted hours, from 6 a.m. to 11 a.m. and 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
People may visit the beaches for recreation only — walking, biking, hiking, fishing, running, swimming, surfing and taking care of pets — but visitors are not allowed to bring chairs, coolers or blankets to sit on. Gatherings of 50 or more people are prohibited and people must practice social distancing.
Governor DeSantis was criticized for leaving beaches open during spring break in March, but most Florida counties closed their beaches or kept them open under very restrictive conditions. Other beaches in South Florida — including Miami Beach — remain closed.
As of Saturday afternoon, Florida has more than 25,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus and more than 740 deaths.
Meanwhile, on Twitter, #FloridaMorons is the no. 1 trending hashtag in the U.S.
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time watching trends at the intersection of travel and technology. As a longtime freelance travel writer, I’ve contributed hundreds of articles to Conde Nast Traveler, CNN Travel, Travel Leisure, Afar, Reader’s Digest, TripSavvy, Parade, NBCNews.com, Good Housekeeping, Parents, Parenting, Esquire, Newsweek, The Boston Globe and scores of other outlets. Over the years, I’ve run an authoritative family vacation-planning site; interviewed Michelin-starred chefs, ship captains, taxi drivers and dog mushers; reviewed hundreds of places to stay, from stately castles and windswept lighthouses to rustic cabins and kitschy motels; ridden the iconic Orient Express; basked in the glory of Machu Picchu; and much more. Follow me on Instagram (@suzannekelleher), Pinterest (@suzannerowankelleher) and Flipboard (@SRKelleher).
Source: Photos: Florida Governor Opens Beaches, Crowds Appear Immediately
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