Two weeks ago, following City Council’s meeting on June 9, the Governor issued an executive order rescinding the “stay at home” orders issued back on March 21. Despite our continuing recovery from the devastating impacts of COVID-19, we announced last week that we were cancelling this year’s July Fourth Weekend activities, including Family Night at Excursion Park on July 3rd, the Junior Olympics competition at Dealy Field on the morning of July 4th, and our annual fireworks show.
We’ve also cancelled all of our Saturday Night Concerts at the Band Shell, as well as our Family Fun Nights on Monday evenings, and the Baby Parade on July 14th.
I totally understand that this is very disappointing for many people who enjoy these special events and programs; however, the most important service we provide is public safety, and with the large crowds these activities attract, it is simply not reasonable to expect that we can let them take place and practice social distancing at the same time – which is so important for everyone’s health and safety.
While we still have far to go in our ongoing fight and recovery from the effects of the pandemic, we ARE seeing some return to normalcy … maybe one of the most visible signs of this was yesterday, when we were finally able to go to hair salons and barber shops. Last week, we saw the return of indoor business within our retail establishments, and the return of outdoor dining.
In the ongoing spirit of public-private partnership that has been a hallmark of our government, the administration has worked with the business community to provide broad latitude to restaurants to allow them to expand the use of outdoor spaces in a safe manner.
The Governor has also indicated that indoor dining, in a limited capacity, will be able to return next week, on July 2nd; however, this does not include bars and nightclubs, which have not had a reopening date announced as of yet.
We also still hope to host our weekly Movies Under the Stars at Excursion Park, which tend to attract smaller crowds.
Finally, please continue to show your respect for others by wearing a face mask when shopping, using public restrooms, or anytime you are within 6 feet of non-household members in public – and remember that we are all one Sea Isle City – and together we will be stronger than ever.
Mayor Leonard Desiderio