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Beach, pool closings at state parks extended through May 31

A sign advises people to keep their distance

A sign advises people to keep their distance at Jones Beach Field 6 on Tuesday. Credit: Danielle Silverman

Beaches and pools at New York State parks will remain closed through May 31 due to the pandemic, instead of opening as they traditionally do shortly before Memorial Day weekend, the parks agency said Friday.

Pools and beaches, including Long Island’s, had been closed along with all nonessential businesses in the state through May 15.

However, the parks themselves have remained open for people wishing to walk or jog or even ride bikes in some places.

The state’s closures echo those undertaken earlier by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio,  who said it was impossible to follow social distancing rules when New Yorkers often have to wait in lines and use crowded locker rooms, let alone share pools.

A park spokesman was not immediately available to say whether lifeguards will be hired.

The announcement, issued on the state parks department website, said the agency will review a plan to allow swimming again and will announce any changes.

Newsday reported this week that officials are awaiting guidelines from Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on how Long Island’s South Shore beaches may reopen. Nassau County, Long Beach, the Town of Hempstead and Jones Beach are all preparing for beaches to reopen.

The Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park in Wantagh, annually a popular Memorial Day weekend event, was canceled by the state parks department last week. 

With John Asbury

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