Coronavirus: Fresno officials remove basketball rims, tennis nets at parks

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- As the number of COVID-19 cases rise, Fresno City and County officials are cracking down, closing parks to enforce social distancing.

"It makes the most sense to follow the guidance of state and close the parks, to make sure those don't become places where people congregate," said Dr. Rais Vohra of the Fresno County Health Department.

The county announced the closures on Friday.

Fresno City officials already started closing parking lots at parks weeks ago, but staff will now remove basketball rims as well as tennis nets at City-owned parks.

Other popular areas, like Shaver Lake and Redinger Lake, are also closed.

Some say the measures are too extreme.

"If you want strength or to be healthy, you have to be outside and be in the sun," said resident Saul Ornales.

However, others say the efforts haven't been enough to stop crowds from coming to the parks.

"Driving Fort Washington, it looked like a festival or some event. People were walking shoulder to shoulder, families walking into Woodward Park," said another resident, Tina Mcdonald.

With warmer temperatures and the Easter holiday ahead, public health officials worry the number of COVID-19 cases will rise if folks don't heed the warning.

"It's going to be dangerous if you have members of different households coming together. You need to make sure you're not sharing your air space," said Vohra.

All city-owned parks will remain closed Easter weekend in hopes that smaller crowds will help in the ongoing fight against the coronavirus.

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