Officials keep an eye on park crowds amid warmup

Coronavirus

PARK TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Some fishermen are reminding families their safety is paramount as West Michigan looks ahead to a warmer Saturday. 

“I don’t want to be rude or nothing, but I don’t want to catch this stuff,” said Jeremiah Zeerip.

Zeerip has no problem telling others to keep their distance at Holland State Park. He plans to be there Saturday to fish.

Like city leaders, Zeerip doesn’t want the warm weather to be a distraction from social distancing requirements.

A sign reminding people to social distance at Holland State Park on May 14, 2020.
A sign reminding people to social distance at Holland State Park on May 14, 2020.

“We’re also encouraging people to wear masks if they are going to be in an area where they can’t keep that six-foot distance because we just don’t want the virus to spread,” said Holland Mayor Nathan Bocks.

A spokesperson for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources said the agency won’t close any parks this weekend.

However, authorities will keep the Grand Haven State Park parking lot closed to stop large crowds from congregating.

Kent County officials could follow suit if residents don’t obey social distancing requirements.

“If we do see things getting out of hand where there is potential risk to others by gathering too closely, then we will have conversations with the county parks department and local government to address the situation in the best way possible,” said Brian Hartl, epidemiology supervisor for the Kent County Health Department.

The DNR told News 8 it plans to open a section of the Grand Haven State Park channel parking lot before Memorial Day.

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