Fresno’s playgrounds closed to help stop the spread of COVID-19

Local News

FRESNO, California (KSEE) – If you are planning a trip to the playground this week, you may need to reschedule.

On Monday, the City of Fresno announced the closure of all city playground equipment to help stop the spread of COVID-19 – effective immediately. It comes after the city closed park parking lots after seeing a surge of people spending time outdoors and not following social distance guidelines.

“The decision was made in accordance with the latest recommendations from the National Parks and Recreation Association to help stop the spread of COVID-19 and with an abundance of caution due to the inability to adequately disinfect and sanitize the equipment after every use.”

City of Fresno’s Parks, After School, Recreation and Community Services (PARCS) Department

For many kids out of school, playing outside is one of the only things left to do.

“Kind of sad, but not sad enough to feel like crying, just disappointed,” said a kid at Todd Beamer Park in northeast Fresno after seeing the playground taped off.

Ella and Maddy Rose went to the dog park at Todd Beamer Park Monday with their father.

“Just been trying to get the kids to come outside, been doing so much homework on the computer at home, needed to get some fresh air, some sunshine,” said Chris Rose.

The Roses say their family is following social distance guidelines and avoiding parks if they are too crowded. They think the city’s decision to shut down playgrounds is positive if it helps stop the spread of COVID-19.

“We’ve been making sure we wash our hands a lot and use hand sanitizer,” said Ella.

Not everyone is following the same advice. Just hours after the city blocked off the playground at Martin Ray Reilly Park, the netting was town down and kids were back on the playground.

“For the most part, our residents are complying, they are being active, you see them on sidewalks, they are using the trials, social distancing, but every once in a while you see something that is causing concern so we just ask people to not just think of themselves but think of others,” said the City of Fresno’s Mark Standriff.

“The best thing you can do for your family is be there for your family. That’s the most important thing,” said Chris Rose.

“I’ve figured out, that’s the silver lining that we’re getting to spend more times with kids and family and home.”

City parks and trails are still open and City leaders encourage people to walk, bike, or run outside as long as they maintain a social distance of 6 feet.

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