The Middletown Town Council approved reopening Third Beach to Middletown residents beginning on Saturday, May 23.
The Third Beach Boat Ramp parking lot will be opened daily from 9:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. Residents wishing to park at this lot are required to present identification that proves they are Middletown residents (driver’s license or state issued ID, voter’s card, car registration or recent tax bill.) There is no fee for residents to park at this time.
Town Council President Robert Sylvia stated that “Because the health and safety of our residents is our number one priority, we need to take a phased approach to reopening our beaches and recreational facilities. This is the first step in that process.”
In addition to the regular beach rules, the town of Middletown is requiring all visitors to Third Beach to wear face coverings when they are unable to consistently maintain 6 feet distance at all times from other persons at the beach, including when walking to and from the parking lot. All groups must be limited in size in accordance with current RI Department of Health and state guidelines, and every group must be a minimum of 6 feet apart from other groups. Visitors are also required to practice physical distancing wherever possible while swimming or doing other water-based activities.
There will no lifeguards on duty, so visitors should proceed with caution while in the water and swim at their own risk.
For the time being, the parking lot at Second Beach will remain closed. The Middletown Town Council will be discussing and voting on other matters related to reopening the beaches this summer at their upcoming meetings on Tuesday, May 26 and Monday, June 1, 2020.
Middletown temporarily closed parking at beaches on April 3rd.
Newport is expected to discuss plans for First Beach during a workshop at 4:30 pm today to discuss COVID-19 in the city. Updates will be posted here.