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Updated Notice Regarding Use of City Parks

County Health Officer Order No. HO-COVID19-22, issued on July 5, 2020, requires adequate social distancing and use of face coverings outdoors by individuals when less than 6 feet away from any person who is not a member of the individual’s household or living unit. Following these simple public health and safety regulations is crucial to slowing the spread of COVID-19 in our community. As of August 6, 2020, a total of 168 Martinez residents are confirmed to have tested positive for COVID-19, but many more asymptomatic carriers (including children) may unknowingly be carrying the virus and putting other members of our community at risk on a daily basis by not following these basic rules.

The City has received numerous calls from members of the public concerned about use of our parks by groups or individuals who are not in compliance with the public health and safety orders of the County Health Officer. City of Martinez parks remain open, but only in a limited capacity.

The following is a list of the permissible Recreation activities and/or facilities based on the current County Health orders:

  • Passive Recreation Activities – walking, jogging, biking, and relaxing, are encouraged so long as you maintain adequate social distancing, do not congregate in groups, and wear a mask when less than 6 feet away from someone not in your household or living unit.
  • Baseball/Softball/Soccer Extracurricular Activity Units – consisting of stable groups of no more than 12 children, participating in the same group over the course of several weeks in monitored drills/practices. These groups are regulated and are required to submit detailed COVID-19 safety protocols to City Recreation in order to be considered for issuance of an official recreation field reservation permit.
  • Tennis
  • Skate Park
  • Dog Park
  • Picnic areas (use limited only to members of the same household or living unit)

Playgrounds have numerous high-touch, high-contact surfaces which could spread the virus from one child to another and therefore, playground use remains prohibited based on the rules of the current County Health orders. City staff have installed prominent new signage throughout City parks to reiterate that these facilities must remain closed to the public until further notice. We again ask the public to please respect these regulations and avoid park playground facilities for the safety of your children, your family, and the Martinez community.

In response to several reported instances of unauthorized, unpermitted field users showing up to play illegal “pop up” games or tournaments on City fields, staff will be implementing two new measures to eliminate this activity. First, a special placard identification system will be utilized to enable the authorized and permitted ballfield, soccer or other extracurricular users to prominently post proof of their permitted authority to use City fields. These placards will be visible to the public and designed to demonstrate the user is a legitimately permitted group. Additionally, staff will be locking all baseball and softball facilities with City locks and issuing keys only to those organizations properly authorized and permitted to use our fields.

Please enjoy our wonderful parks responsibly and safely in a way that protects yourself and the ones you love, as well as your neighbors in the Martinez community. Members of the public that witness unauthorized user groups or activities not in compliance with the County Health orders are encouraged to call the Martinez Police Department non-emergency number at (925) 372-3440.

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