Parks superintendent: Education, not tickets for people who use Minneapolis beaches

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Minneapolis beaches and pools will be closed for the year because of the coronavirus pandemic, but Al Bangoura, the Parks and Recreation Board superintendent, said on Saturday people who use the beaches will not be ticketed.

Instead, the MPRB will use staff to educate those who violate the policy.

The parks board said members were told by health officials that the peak of the coronavirus outbreak will not pass until July in Minnesota. By the time the facilities would be ready, the season would normally be coming to a close.

The MPRB announced on Thursday all beaches and pools will be closed for the summer and that all programs will be canceled or postponed through Aug. 31. 

MPRB beaches and pools to be closed this summer; programs canceled until at least Aug. 31

For the time being, parks remain open, but officials say they hope people will follow social distancing guidelines.

"We're not looking at ticketing people, and we're not enforcing it through police," Bangoura said. "We're enforcing it through really our staff being engaged with the community."

Bangoura said the park board hasn't made any decisions about other activities on the lakes, such as sailing or kayaking, but they'll have a better idea in a few weeks.