Golfers and ordinary citizens alike might be able to enjoy the great outdoors soon as Governor Tom Wolf announced on Monday that he would be lifting some restrictions to specific outdoor activities on May 1. Golf courses, private owned campgrounds, marinas, and guided fishing trips are some of these related activities. Campgrounds in state parks are not allowed to open and will remain closed through May 14.
Although these related businesses and activities are now allowed, the Wolf administration still requires the establishments to follow the updated issued life-sustaining business guidance.
The CDC's guidance for visiting parks and recreational facilities are as follows:
- Stay close to home: Pennsylvanians are encouraged to enjoy permitted outdoor recreational activities within their community and avoid crowding popular destinations.
- Practice social distancing: Maintain the recommended minimum of 6 feet apart from fellow recreationists. Pennsylvanians are also encouraged to wear a mask or protective garment that covers the nose and mouth any time they go outside. If a parking lot at a park is full or there are too many people on the same trail, find an alternate place to recreate. Cross the street to avoid running directly past another runner or wait longer at a golf hole for a fellow golfer to move forward.
- Minimize risk to others: Individuals should only go out if they feel healthy and have not been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.
- Practice good hygiene: Wash hands often with soap and warm water for 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use a hand sanitizer containing at least 60 percent alcohol. Avoid surfaces that are touched often, such as doorknobs and handrails.
- Have a plan: Create a safety plan before heading outdoors. Explain to children the need to keep their distance from others, even if they happen to see a friend while outside. Discuss with partners, social distancing while on the golf course. Think through how to avoid other runners when waiting to cross a street at the same time safely.
"Pennsylvanians have remained resilient throughout this COVID-19 crisis, and as we successfully continue to flatten the curve to protect our physical health, it is critical that we also focus on our physical and mental health during these extraordinary times. As the weather warms and daylight lengthens, enjoying time outdoors is an important way to manage stress," Wolf said. "As we start to take measured, limited steps to reopen our commonwealth, reopening these industries will help to rebuild our economy and strengthen our mental health."
Governor Wolf continues to urge citizens to practice social distancing, stay at home, and hope for everyone's cooperation in flattening the curve together.