Lavallette, Belmar, Wildwood, and more: Several Jersey Shore towns announce plans to slowly reopen

Several beach towns at the Jersey Shore, including Lavallette, Belmar, and Wildwood, have announced their plans to slowly reopen.

News 12 Staff

May 6, 2020, 2:32 PM

Updated 1,437 days ago

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Several beach towns at the Jersey Shore, including Lavallette, Belmar, and Wildwood, have announced their plans to slowly reopen.
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In Lavallette, the beaches reopened Tuesday, with few restrictions.
Mayor Walter lacicero confirmed people can once again access the beach. Gov. Phil Murphy said Monday guidance from Trenton on how to reopen beaches is coming soon, but that hasn't stopped mayors up and down the Jersey Shore from starting the reopening process.
The only rule is people must follow social distancing guidelines. You can walk, sit, sunbathe, surf, throw a frisbee -- as long as you maintain the 6-foot separation from other families. There are no parking restrictions in town, but the boardwalk itself remains off limits -- for now.
In Belmar, the town will be open for Memorial Day Weekend, and some parts of the beachfront will be open by Friday. 
Belmar Mayor Mark Walsifer promises to have a "normal" Memorial Day Weekend, while at the same time keeping compliance with social distancing guidelines. 
The boardwalk currently remains closed, and parking restrictions are in effect for the southern part of the town. But it will soon change -- the beaches will be open, lifeguards will return to work, and there will be a kick off to summer and other towns up and down the coast. 
Belmar Administrator Ed Kirschenbaum says the council met Tuesday night and came up with a plan.
“We have a comprehensive plan how to deal with our staff and our employees to keep them safe for personal protection equipment, such as a face covering, masks, gloves and hand sanitizer for social distancing and guidelines to enforce and have in place for the comfort and care of well-being of our residents and our visitors because safety is the first concern that we do have,” says Kirschenbaum.
Here are the specifics:

Badge sales and lifeguards on duty by Memorial Day Weekend.

Public restrooms will reopen, masks will be required in restrooms, but not on the beach.

Social Distance Task Force will monitor group activity on beaches to maintain 6-foot separation.

Parking restrictions lifted and boardwalk to reopen Friday.
Crews will begin removing benches today to widen the boardwalk. Kirschenbaum says forcing everyone in the street is simply not safe, especially with the increase in vehicle traffic.  Businesses reopening remains up to Gov. Murphy.
In Wildwood, the boardwalk, beaches, playgrounds and parks are set to reopen Friday. People will be allowed to run, walk or bike on the boardwalk.
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The decision to reopen retail stores and restaurants is up to Gov. Murphy.
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North Wildwood Mayor Patrick Rosenello says social distancing guidelines will remain in place in the areas.
Short term-rentals are also set to resume May 26 in North Wildwood and Wildwood.
In Cape May, county officials say they've formed a coalition of local leaders to help safely reopen.
The coalition submitted a 35-page plan to Gov. Murphy Tuesday, proposing to reopen many of its public and business facilities no earlier than June 1.
The town would also like seasonal rentals to begin May 11, with shorter-term rentals allowed to begin no earlier than June 1.
Under the proposed plan, hotels and motels would be allowed to operate at 60% capacity effective June 1, and full capacity by June 22.
No official decision has been made yet.


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