Parks in Portland reopened this past week as part of the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
With that said, Portland Parks and Recreation director Jamie White reminded citizens in using the parks that, “It’s a partial reopening.”
What that means is that certain activities are now all right to take part in, as long as safe social distancing practices remain in place. However, other things that pertain to the parks remain closed to the public.
“At Richland Park, the walking track, the hiking and bike trails and the open space will be open. The restrooms, the playground and any sporting event and shelters are closed,” White said. “The gym will remain closed. We are currently looking at all options for the swimming pool. We have not yet decided it if will be open or not this summer. We are currently studying all circumstances to see about the future of the pool. We have not made a decision on the pool this summer.”
Rims that been taken off the backboards of the outdoor basketball goals at Richland Park have been put back on, and can be used with proper guidelines.
“The rims are back up. We are slowly opening the parks back up. All we ask is that people be patient and please do the social distancing,” White said.
One thing that has not returned is team sports, such as youth baseball and soccer and both youth and adult softball. Some of those are still holding out hope to play, while others have already packed it in on the spring season.
“What our civic clubs are doing is that Portland Soccer Club has already cancelled their season (for the spring), and they’re working on the refunds. Currently, Dixie Youth baseball is postponed. They have not cancelled their season. They’re doing like everybody else. They’re waiting to see what their options are,” White said. “Soccer is fortunate enough that if everything goes right, they will have a fall season. They’re in a different circumstance than baseball, because they actually have two seasons a year, whereas baseball just has one season. So baseball is hanging in there a little bit longer to see what the future holds.”
Across town, Portland Little League’s season remains on hold under orders from Little League Baseball headquarters for the time being.
Adult slo-pitch softball leagues, which have been a popular summer time activity, are cancelled for this season.
“There are no adult slo-pitch softball leagues that will be held this summer,” White said.
All the facilities at Meadowbrook Park are now back open, except for the playground, which remains off limits.
“Everything at Meadowbrook Park is open except the playground. We’ve unlocked the gates at Meadowbrook and opened it up. The dog park is open. The skate park is open. Everything at Meadowbrook is available, except the playground,” White said.
Now that the parks are operational again on a limited basis, they will be open from 7 a.m. until dusk.
“We’re going to approach this slowly and start bringing everything back up. It will be a process. We’re really going to need some support from the community with the social distancing,” White said.