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COVID affects July 4th: Masks, crowd limits

City, county, state parks set safety rules
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Posted at 6:30 PM, Jul 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-03 21:30:44-04

TUCSON, Ariz. - The coronavirus will require some adjustment this holiday weekend. Parks are not closed but some of the things that make you want to go to a park----will be.

This holiday weekend will be less than carefree---because the coronavirus and efforts to contain it will make a day in the park---different.

At Tucson Parks there will be no picnicking under the ramadas this July 4th. They are closed as part of the city’s COVID-19 precautions. The city says you can enjoy the open areas of city parks but wear masks and have no more than ten people in your group.

Pools and splash pads are closed at Tucson and Pima County Parks.

Pima County Parks will still let you use the ramadas but masks are required and large groups are restricted.

Pima parks workers are doing enhanced cleaning to help keep facilities safe and they’ll be watching to see if park visitors are wearing masks and distancing.

Pima County Parks spokesperson Valerie Samoy says, “And if we find that, for instance, you know playgrounds and ramada, people aren't using those responsibly, we will close them down.”

Patagonia Lake is a popular state park about 75 miles from Tucson but as a virus precaution the Arizona Parks Department is limiting how many people can enter state parks. Spokesperson Michelle Thompson recommends coming as early as you can so you’re not turned away---and be prepared to wear a mask indoors, and maybe outdoors too.

“For example, on the beach area at Patagonia Lake State Park, that gets really crowded so if you're within six feet of other people. Then what you need to do is wear your mask, even if you're outdoors, but we do understand that if you're hiking or doing some activity outside you may not be able to do that.”

And you can go to the website for the state park you plan to visit to see if it’s close to capacity under distancing rules and about to close to new entries.