The resort town of Ocean City, Maryland, will reopen its beach and boardwalk for locals Saturday in what a city council member called a “baby step” toward an eventual full reopening.
The news was announced at Monday’s city council meeting Monday, the Capital-Gazette reported. A spokesperson for Gov. Larry Hogan later confirmed the news.
“We wanted to take this baby step to give people hope and allow them to see that there is light at the end of tunnel,” City Council Secretary Mary Knight told the paper.
The move does not mean the beach is fully open for tourists and visitors, and most boardwalk shops will reportedly stay closed.
“This is a way to give nearby residents more opportunities to get outside and enjoy fresh air, while still adhering to social distancing guidelines and gathering limits. The governor’s stay-at-home order remains in effect,” read a joint statement from Mr. Hogan’s communications director Mike Ricci and Ocean City’s communications manager Jessica Waters.
At least 42 states will have partially reopened their economies and relaxed stay-at-home orders by May 10, but Maryland has not made any other moves in this direction besides the Ocean City news.