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All County and State Beach Parks Close for 2 Weeks amid Spike in COVID-19 Cases

by Thunda

All County and State Beach Parks on Hawai‘i will be closed for two weeks from September 4 through September 18, amid a spike in COVID-19 cases.  The intent of the closures is to prevent the further spread of the virus by limiting gatherings at the beaches.

Department of Health contact tracing has shown that large gatherings are a key source of the virus’s spread, with several clusters being linked to social gatherings.

“We are at a critical stage, and we must stop the spread of the virus,” said Mayor Harry Kim. “Beach parks can only be used to access to the ocean, exercising, fishing and gathering food, and using the bathrooms and shower facilities.”

“Everybody has kuleana to end the spread of COVID-19 on Hawai‘i Island, and by rallying as a community we can beat this.”

Beach parks and coastal parks may be used for direct access to and from the ocean in order to engage in exercise, fishing and gathering food. Park restrooms and showers will be open during the hours of 7:00 a.m. through 7:00 p.m. daily.  

The following terms and conditions will be in effect, per an Amendment to the Mayor’s COVID-19 Emergency Rule No. 11:

•             Use of pavilions, barbecues, temporary canopies, pop-up tents, tarps and similar shade devices are not allowed.
•             Tables, hibachis, coolers, and other items commonly associated with picnicking and gatherings are prohibited.
•             Camping at all beach parks and shoreline parks is prohibited.  All existing camping permits are hereby cancelled.
•             All commercial operations and activities are prohibited.
•             Camping at all beach parks and shoreline parks is prohibited.  All existing camping permits are hereby cancelled.

To clarify, for Kailua Park, the restrictions only apply to the area makai of the runway.  Lili‘uokalani Gardens remains open; however, the use of pavilions, barbecues, temporary canopies, pop-up tents, tarps and similar shad devices are not allowed, and tables, hibachis, coolers, and other items commonly associated with picnicking and gatherings are prohibited.

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