South Orange Reservation Mask wearing

Me and my husband had a lovely walk today in the South Orange reservation.  We found it quite disconcerting that about 50% of the people in the park weren't wearing a mask when the rules specifically say that a face covering is required. There Was a electronic board stating it as you entered. One man on a bike actually coughed as he passed by us.  Shameful.  


I noticed that today.  The Glen Ave. parking lot is always packed too.  I would never go in that way.  There are quieter places to park and walk. 

Also noticing a weird phenomenon, and this includes in the Reservation today.  Surgical masks strewn about.  Who is throwing surgical masks on the ground and why?



It's a shame because these kinds of behaviors ruin it for the rest of us.


Some people think the whole thing is a hoax, or it's just the flu, or it's their God given right to not wear a mask.  Disturbing but not at all unexpected.


Does it actually say masks required?  State law doesn't require them in parks.  Some people might not have been expecting to be required and might not have had 1 with them....I try to keep 2 on me at all times just in case I need one.


The reservation in South Orange and the Reservoir in West Orange both require face coverings and it's stated on the entrance to both.


Just a little correction. Believe it or not the Reservation has no land in South Orange.


galileo said:

Just a little correction. Believe it or not the Reservation has no land in South Orange.

 If ya want, we'll give you some.


By the end of today it will have been the end of days for over 10,000 New Jersey citizens (it is 9,946 as I write this). -That is up from 7,300 just two weeks ago. -That's almost 200 a day STILL.

Yet the warm sunshine seems to evaporate many folks concerns. 


There is absolutely the sense among many people that being outdoors means masks are not necessary. It’s so alarming. 


If you are at the reservation you should at least have a mask with you, keep it in your hand or low on your chin if you want to when you’re not near anyone, but put it on when you’re nearing other people. 

Outside in general - same standard of behavior should apply, but if you don’t have a mask, you should *make a point* to proactively distance yourself from others. I mean, you be the one who crosses to the other side of the street.

I find most people observe the rules and are considerate but of course there is a small subset of people who don’t. If you are maskless and you make little/no effort to distance yourself from someone else on the sidewalk, you are obnoxious.


I noticed the same thing at SM Reservation this week … Huge sign saying "Face covering required," but many without. At this point, I'm perceiving those wearing masks and performing the Corona Swerve as offering social solidarity, and those not offering an individualistic middle finger to notions of community.

Our area aspires to be inclusive, and by and large I think we do fairly well at it. The flip side to inclusivity, however, is individualism. As we (rightly) encourage people to freely be who they are, many people take that as an opportunity to behave solely on their own terms, without regard for community. Evidence is much more glaring now, perhaps, but a character trait of our community always.


It upsets me to see people in parks or even on the street not wearing masks. It further upsets me that people let their children ride their bikes all over the place while not wearing masks. The adults without masks almost all practice  social distancing, in my experience, but the kids on bikes do not.

In South Mountain Reservation they ought to have Police or the Sheriff patrolling in a car and enforcing the rules.


Honestly, I've come to believe that for those not taking precautions and living "normally" it is more of a manifestation of defiance of fate rather than a "f-ck those other people" (although I'm willing to concede that it could be both).


Curfew is still 8:00 p.m.  

Drive by Locust Grove at 7:50. You will see several cars still in the lot. There is no way all of those hikers and illegal bikers will be able to finish their ride/hike and be home by 8:00.



If the reservation has a sign stating that masks must be worn at all times, then that is what people should do.  However, the state guidelines are that masks should be worn when social distancing is not possible, which means that people do not have to have their mask on if they are outside at a distance from others.  Those are also the rules posted in our town parks, but someone yelled from 50+ feet away at my husband this morning in Memorial Park that he should be wearing a mask, even though he was nowhere near anyone else.  Yes, he had a mask with him and would have put it on if needed. 


Mask-wearing frequency seems to have some correspondence with expectations of ability to social distance. On Valley St yesterday, everyone, including families with small children, seemed to be wearing a mask (where it's harder to social distance). On the smaller & quieter side streets, it seemed more variable.  For those going to the reservation, there may be different perceptions around how possible social distancing will be.


I had someone call the cops on my while I was sitting on the front steps on residential property....alone -with no one else around-because I was not wearing a mask.....

it seems it is legal for the reservation to have more stringent rules....I did find a website that does say masks are required.


Wearing a mask while on park property is one of the conditions of using a County or State park.  Too many violations and the parks will be closed again.  This requirement was put in place because it was rightly assumed with warmer weather that too many people would be flocking to these parks to make social distancing possible.


jmitw said:

I had someone call the cops on my while I was sitting on the front steps on residential property....alone -with no one else around-because I was not wearing a mask.....

it seems it is legal for the reservation to have more stringent rules....I did find a website that does say masks are required.

 --- and how much time did you spend in the clink? Or was it, "Sorry to have bothered you?


Today, the Rez was the most crowded it's been since I started walking my dog again on the trails, post-reopening, but it seemed like most people were wearing masks, unlike previous visits.   I guess it makes sense that when people sense crowding, they will put the masks on.

This is going to be a delicate balancing act going forward.  There's going to be a natural letting down of the guard that people will have to resist if they don't want lockdown to return.   



 


I was walking on Brookside this morning and noticed that most people were not wearing masks. What's the call there?


j_r said:

I was walking on Brookside this morning and noticed that most people were not wearing masks. What's the call there?

 Wear a mask

and to those who are yelling at the folks not wearing masks, you know that doesn't work, right?


This is why I'm staying out of the reservation.  A bunch of knuckleheads running around that don't give a sh#t.


how about the ones with a mask...under the nose or sometimes not even covering their mouth...some people really think you only need to cover your mouth.


What is also disconcerting is that mountain bikers, of which I am one, are biking in the reservation! The reservation is prohibited for mountain biking. It's horrible for the trails and for kids walking on the trails. STOP MOUNTAIN biking in the reservation!


I have a friend who lives in Bordentown, NJ. Someone yelled at her for  wearing a mask. You can't make this stuff up.


I appreciate this thread because I had no idea masks were required on the reservation. I knew the state guidelines required masks for indoor use, but I wasn't aware of separate regulations for specific parks. The entrance I use for the reservation has no notice on it of mask requirement, and I assumed the mask-wearers I saw elected to do so. (I hadn't thought to check the county park website, either.) I just kept socially distant from everyone. Anyway, this is all to say that there are scenarios where people may innocently not wear masks because the dissemination of guidelines is tricky; I'll certainly wear one from now on, and politely inform people of the rule in case they (like I) simply didn't know. So again, thanks for this!


The West Orange reservoir yesterday had a large sign on it's entry way and several other signs along the route stating that masks were required.  I'd say 90 percent of people were wearing masks and those that chose not to were running / jogging or under the age of 30.  There was quite a few people there for just after 12 noon.


tuxedo said:

What is also disconcerting is that mountain bikers, of which I am one, are biking in the reservation! The reservation is prohibited for mountain biking. It's horrible for the trails and for kids walking on the trails. STOP MOUNTAIN biking in the reservation!

Amen. Mountain bikers have ignored the ban on biking in the reservation for as long as I can remember.  It was put in place for a reason. I've yelled at more than a few of them.



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