PORT ANGELES – Clallam County announced Wednesday that if Washington State Parks open for day use on May 5, County parks will do the same. He said that decision may be tempered by the rumors that Governor Inslee might extend the May 4 stay-home order.
County Parks Director Joel Winborn understands that people need to get out of the house, and explains how the opening would work.
“Yeah, I think we’re all getting a little bit stir-crazy and ready to get out. So, up until now, we’ve kind of followed suit with other areas, with other parks like state parks, for example. So we are, as of Tuesday, May 5th, going to reopen our days use facilities. One of the caveats to that is that the facilities of the day use areas that have restrooms with running water, those restrooms aren’t going to be open. We are however going to have Sani-cans installed at those facilities. We’re not going to be opening our campgrounds right now. We’re still waiting to see, kind of, what’s going to happen, not only locally but, you know, around the state as far as what the Governor’s going to recommend that we do.”
Winborn says opening the facilities with running water would be an invitation for multiple people to gather in those small buildings, which is contrary to social distancing policies.
Despite County Parks being closed since April 7, Winborn says they’re still kicking people out on a regular basis who are ignoring the rules. And you might be surprised at where they’re coming from.
“One of the interesting things that we’ve seen is that we’re getting a lot of people here from not only outside the county but outside the…off the peninsula. We’ve seen several people over here and, unfortunately, had to ask them to leave, who are from Tacoma, Seattle, in that area over there. So that’s been kind of an eye-opener for us too.”