New York and New Jersey governors Andrew Cuomo and Phil Murphy have decided to loosen their state’s outdoor gathering restrictions as Memorial Day approaches. Cuomo has allowed groups of 10 to gather anywhere in New York as of Friday night (May 22), so long as it’s for “any lawful purpose or reason.” However, folks must still practice social distancing.
In New Jersey, where they’d been capped at 10 people, Murphy announced on Friday that gatherings of up to 25 people will now be allowed outdoors, including church gatherings, and fitness events like fishing, golfing and batting. Additionally, Murphy says, “If you were looking forward to gathering with your neighbors for a Memorial Day cookout, you may do so, so long as social distancing and personal responsibility remain the order of the day.”
In addition to Cuomo’s easing of restrictions, which would allow folks to gather for picnics in parks and backyards while staying six feet apart, he mimicked his social distancing warning to eager beachgoers. However, NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio still stands firm on prohibiting any swimming as “there will not be lifeguards.” He adds, “I’m very hopeful that this weekend at our beaches, you’re going to see people following the rules because they know it’s the right thing to do. But if they need some reminders, of course there’ll be people out there educating, giving out face coverings.”