Minneapolis beaches set to close for summer

April 4, 2020

For Anna Billings, junior, going to Cedar Lake in summer to swim is a regular occurence. 

However, a recent announcement surrounding Minneapolis beaches will impact citizens like Billings, who consider beach days a quintessential part of summer.

On April 2, the Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board (MPRB) made an announcement surrounding the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and the guidelines that will be implemented to help flatten the curve and prevent the spread of COVID-19.

One big change from the update is that beaches and wading pools will not be open throughout this summer given the current projections for social distancing measures.

Along with the beach and pool closures, the Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden, located less than two miles from the Hopkins School District’s largest elementary school, Meadowbrook Elementary, will not be open. Parade Ice Garden, the park system’s public restrooms and recreation centers also will be seeing closures.

As of now, trails, parkways and dog parks are under the umbrella of things that will remain open. Additionally, athletic fields and courts are currently under this threshold, but contact sports will not be allowed.

Last summer, the Minneapolis parks system had another scare that halted park access. As reported by Star Tribune, Lake Nokomis was forced to close both of its beaches in August, due to the spread of e-coli. Nokomis was just one example of many beaches in the Metro Area dealing with these outbreaks in 2019. 

Billings, like so many other members of the community, is disappointed by the MPRB’s closures, but recognizes the importance of everyone’s health and safety is paramount.

“I don’t think anyone could predict what would happen in 2020. Living in Minneapolis, I feel lucky to have access to so many lakes. It’s unfortunate that coronavirus has put these activities on hold, but I understand that they are making safety a priority,” Billings said.

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