Just as the summer heat is descending upon the Sunshine State and people are itching to stretch their legs, most Lee County parks and recreation centers are reopening Wednesday, April 22. Once again, people will be able to enjoy Florida's nature preserves and trails that were closed amid COVID-19 concerns. The decision is the county's way of easing back into a sense of normalcy.
"This move, approved at the regularly scheduled Board of County Commissioners meeting, is part of the county's phased-in-approach for residents to be able to recreate outside of their neighborhoods while still observing the Governor's Executive Order," the county said in a press release.
"The county is grateful to those in the community who have joined the "Take The Pledge" social media campaign to employ best practices to stop the spread of COVID-19," the press release continues.
However, this isn’t the time to slack off on those social distancing guidelines, since the county can only work to open sites as long as the number of cases stays under control.
County Manager, Roger Desjarlais, said in an NBC-2 report that "the time is right" for all parks to reopen.
Starting tomorrow, residents can look forward to several Lee County parks with trails reopening.
Locations including Hickey Creek Mitigation Park, JY Linear Park, Lehigh Acres Trailhead Park, Nalle Grade Park, Pineland Monument Park, Pinewood Trails Park, Telegraph Creek Paddlecraft Launch, and Tropical Point Park will be open for all to enjoy.
Six Mile Cypress Slough Preserve, excluding the interpretive center, and Caloosahatchee Regional Park’s north side will also reopen.
Several preserve trails for you to get your hiking fix will be accepting visitors as well.
These locations include Alva Scrub Preserve, Bob Janes Preserve, Buckingham Trails Preserve, Caloosahatchee Creeks Preserve East, Galt Preserve, Hickory Swamp Preserve, Pine Island Flatwoods Preserve, Pop Ash Creek Preserve, Powell Creek Preserve, Prairie Pines Preserve, Six Mile Cypress North, Telegraph Creek Preserve, and Wild Turkey Strand Preserve.
Lakes Park is the only park in the area expected to remain closed for the time being.
Get your steps in on these beautiful trails, and continue to practice social distancing!
We strongly advise that before you go swimming or visit any location, you check the most recent updates on potential hazards, security, water quality, and closures. If you do plan to visit a location, respect the environment.