As the number of coronavirus cases across California continues to increase, state and local officials have taken measures to try and curb the spread of the respiratory illness ahead of the Forth of July weekend, including closing beaches in some areas.
On Wednesday, Gov. Gavin Newsom called for new coronavirus restrictions in 19 counties on the state’s watchlist, including Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura counties.
He asked that restaurants, wineries, tasting rooms, movie theaters, family entertainment centers, zoos, museums and cardrooms to close indoor operations.
Newsom said that counties with mandatory closures should consider canceling firework shows. He also urged residents to reconsider gatherings with people outside their households and to avoid crowds.
The tighter restrictions come as officials are concerned over the increased rate of community spread of coronavirus.
California saw 8,610 new coronavirus cases on Tuesday, breaking the state’s single-day record for a second straight day, according to a Los Angeles Times tracker, which differs from the state’s official figures.
Here’s a look at what’s opened and closed this holiday weekend:
Los Angeles County will close its beaches starting 12:01 a.m. Friday through 5 a.m. on Monday, officials announced earlier this week.
The temporary closures affect all beaches, piers, parking lots, beach bike paths, and beach access points. L.A. County officials also banned fireworks displays in the nation’s most populous county this weekend.
Ventura County beaches, among the first in Southern California to reopen for recreational use amid the pandemic, will also be closed during the holiday weekend.
Laguna Beach in Orange County followed suit and will close shores on July 4, with the option to extend to July 5. The annual fireworks display was also canceled as a safety measure, officials said.
And on Wednesday, the Newport City Council voted to shutter their shores after two lifeguards tested positive for coronavirus.
Beaches in that area will close at 10 p.m. on July 3 and reopen at 6 a.m. on July 5, officials said.
Orange County will also close its beaches during the holiday weekend, officials announced Thursday.
Aliso Beach, Capistrano Beach, Salt Creek Beach, Baby Beach, Bayside Beach, Camel Point Beach, Poche Beach, Strands Beach, Table Rock Beach, Thousand Steps Beach, Treasure Island Beach and West Street Beach and parking lots in those areas will be on Saturday and Sunday.
In addition, state beaches in Los Angeles and Ventura counties will be temporarily closed to the public to align with those regions’ public health orders, officials said. Parking facilities and parking on roadways will also be prohibited at all state beaches in Orange, San Diego and Santa Barbara counties.
Newsom over the weekend ordered bars closed in seven counties, including Los Angeles, and recommended that eight additional counties close theirs.
On Wednesday, the Orange County Board of Supervisors voted to close bars starting Thursday because of ongoing concerns of community spread. The county, which was recently added to the state’s coronavirus watchlist, has seen a spike in COVID-19 cases. As of Tuesday the region has 13,843 coronavirus cases with 340 deaths.
The county’s order does not prohibit restaurants, pubs and breweries that offer food services to operate, but the establishment must only serve alcohol in the same transaction as a meal, officials explained. If a bar does offer meals, they are required to comply with the same industry guidance as restaurants.
“While we would prefer not to close bars at this time, many of our neighboring counties have closed their bars, and it’s important to take precautions to ensure the safety of the general public,” Supervisor Michelle Steel said in a news release.
In San Diego County, officials imposed a 10 p.m curfew on restaurants and bars.
Earlier this week, Riverside County ordered all drinking establishments that don’t serve food to close. Alcohol may still be served with food.
In Ventura County, alcohol service was already limited to venues that also sell food. But on Monday officials issued new rules, saying dine-in service must close by 10 p.m. and dining time will be limited to an hour and a half.
The governor also recommended that San Bernardino County close its bars, but officials there have yet to respond. The county may close bars Friday if its coronavirus data doesn’t improve, according to the San Bernardino Sun.
Parks and trails in L.A. County
Pico Rivera officials closed city parks June 30 “out of an abundance of caution” amid the pandemic.
Runyon Canyon Park, will be closed after 5 p.m. Friday, all of Saturday and after 5 p.m. Sunday, officials announced Friday.
The popular hiking area reopened in late May after previous overcrowding concerns caused officials to stop allowing public access.
Most other trails in Los Angeles County remain open, but Eaton Canyon Natural Area now requires advance reservations because of previous overcrowding.
Golf courses and tennis courts have reopened at Los Angeles city parks, but recreation centers, aquatic facilities, state parks, playgrounds, baseball and soccer fields and basketball courts in those areas remain closed.
At Griffith Park, the Griffith Parkline, Griffith Observatory, Travel Town and the Wisdom Tree Trail/Burbank Peak Trail remain closed and rangers are limiting traffic in an effort to reduce crowds in the late afternoon and evenings, the Los Angeles Times reported.
Rangers will stop traffic coming into the expansive park from Vermont Avenue and Fern Dell at 5 p.m. Saturday and stop inbound foot traffic at those entrances at 7 p.m., the newspaper reported.
Santa Monica Mountains
Most trails, parking lots and overlooks and restrooms in the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area have reopened, but its two visitor centers remain closed.
National forests in Southern California
In the Angeles National Forest, Chantry Flats and Roberts Camp above Sierra Madre are closed on weekends.
Picnic areas are open, as are some backcountry campgrounds including Mount Oak, Lake, Table Mountain, Sycamore, South Fork and Big Rock. Campgrounds at Mount Pacifico, Little Jimmy, Buckhorn and others, as well as visitor centers, remain closed.
In the San Bernardino National Forest, trails, picnic areas and campgrounds are open. But popular swimming holes, including the Aztec Falls at Deep Creek, are temporarily closed in the Lake Arrowhead area.
Trails and campgrounds in the sprawling Los Padres National Forest are open with the exception of the Santa Paula Canyon and the Last Chance Trail in the Ojai District.
Trails are open in the Cleveland National Forest, but a dozen campgrounds were closed through Wednesday. Visit the forest’s website for more detailed information.