NAPLES (CBSMiami) — City officials in Naples held an emergency meeting Monday to discuss reopening city beaches after abruptly closing them Sunday because visitors were not practicing social distancing and could have contributed to the spread of the new coronavirus.
According to CBS affiliate WINK News, the city council voted 4-3 in favor of reopening with restrictions based on the days of the week.
From Monday through Friday, the beaches will be open from sunrise to sunset. Chairs and umbrellas will be allowed, but cooler and tents are not.
Come Saturday and Sunday, the beaches will be open from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. Chairs, tents, umbrellas and coolers are not allowed during that time. However, chairs will be allowed from 5 p.m. to sunset.
A city council member had pitched this hybrid opening to discourage people from driving across the state to hit the beach.
That’s exactly what happened on Saturday when people from Miami-Dade and Broward drove to Collier County to enjoy the beaches there since beaches remain closed in South Florida.
But there were so many people on the beach and many weren’t social distancing so officials shut Naples beaches down.
Councilman Gary Price went to the beach Saturday after learning about the crowds and took photos of people not obeying rules that require groups to remain apart.
Some people want the beach open to local residents only.