HAMPTON, Va. (WAVY) — Beaches across the Commonwealth are still closed for Memorial Day weekend, including in Hampton — with exception of walking and jogging.
Originally, beaches were not included in the list of establishments and facilities allowed to open and ease restrictions during phase 1, as per Governor Ralph Northam.
On Monday, May 18, however, Northam announced that Virginia Beach will be allowed to open its beaches for the long weekend. This decision comes after the city submitted a strategic plan, and although open, visitors will follow strict safety and capacity guidelines.
“State officials have stressed that this is a pilot project, and if social distancing is not maintained, the beach can be closed again for activities other than walking and jogging,” said officials with the City of Hampton. “However, if things go well in Virginia Beach, the governor has said he will look to a similar modified opening for other beaches, including those in Hampton and Norfolk.”
Hampton submitted its plan to Richmond for safe reopening practices and is currently waiting for a response. The city is ready to continue with reopening when given permission to do so.
“We look forward to being able to announce the reopening of our beaches. Please understand that this next step will be a modified opening like Virginia Beach’s with half the usual amount of parking, physical distancing requirements, etc.,” officials continued.
“We will also not resume food trucks or traditional Sunday night Groovin’ by the Bay concerts, as they would cause a concentration of too many people. These concessions need to be made to ensure that the beach can open for our residents’ and visitors’ enjoyment.”
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