Exercise, but no sunbathing, on Wildwoods beaches during COVID-19 pandemic

Andrew Kramer
April 08, 2020 - 8:54 am

WILDWOOD, N.J. (KYW Newsradio) — Like many Jersey Shore towns, the Wildwoods are now closing beaches and boardwalks to keep people away during the coronavirus pandemic. There are, however, some exceptions.

People are prohibited from lying on the sand or gathering in groups on the Wildwoods beaches, but for those who want to get their steps in or fish or surf — or even grab their metal detector — Wildwood Mayor Pete Byron says go for it. 

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"This time of year, if you're on the beach, you're going to see people jogging, some people walking, a lot of surfers, a lot of fisherman. Those type of activities normally practice safe distancing," he said, "because surfers don’t surf on top of each other; fisherman don’t fish on top of each other. We just thought we needed to give people some type of alternative to exercise."

What people can't do, Byron says: "Sitting in chairs, lying on blankets, organized sports. You can’t get a bunch of kids together and play touch football, things like that. A grouping of people on the beach is prohibited."

As for the Wildwoods boardwalks, officials ask everyone to stay away altogether. The North Wildwood bike path and sea wall are open for exercise only, however, until 8 a.m.

"We felt we were kind of hurting the locals more than anything by shutting down the boardwalk, but Sunday is Easter. People, they would have come down and taken a walk on the boardwalk. And as much as we would love for those guys to have the opportunity, right now it's just not the time for that."

Byron says police will be on patrol to make sure people are following the rules, which are in place at least though the rest of the month.

For the CDC's full list of social distancing recommendations, visit cdc.gov.