Updated, Tuesday, May 26, 2020.
This week many businesses and outdoor spaces have the green light to reopen as part of Phase 1 of the Reopening Massachusetts plan. All businesses must comply with the safety standards set by the state and enforce social distancing. Read the full Reopening Massachusetts report here.
But before you head out, you’ll want to check that your favorite park or beach is actually open and if there are new rules for visiting. Below we’re listing when some popular North Shore spots will be ready for your visit. If we missed one that you want to share, please email [email protected].
Please note the state has said groups of towels must be spaced 12 ft apart, no groups larger than 10 people, and masks must be worn when social distancing is not possible, among other guidelines. Towns may also have additional restrictions for beach access. This is a great article on the current rules.
- Crane Beach in Ipswich is now open, but restricting parking passes to existing parking permit holders and Trustees members between May 19 and June 2. Beginning on June 3, the general public can buy parking passes online, in advance. There will be no on-site transactions, and visitors without passes will be turned away. More details here.
- Singing Beach and Black & White Beach in Manchester-by-the-Sea are now open for residents only, with limited access. (Full guidelines here.)
- Wingaersheek, Good Harbor and Niles in Gloucester have temporary parking restrictions at lots and along nearby roads as well. More details gloucester-ma.gov.
Parks & Zoos
These are the official guidelines from the state on visiting parks, open spaces and outdoor education programs.
- The Franklin Park & Stone Zoos will reopen to the public on June 4. General Admission tickets go on sale on June 1. Members can take advantage of Member Appreciation Days (May 28 to June 3). Online reservations are required for entry. Members, check your inbox for full details! Review the following Re-Opening FAQs for Franklin Park Zoo and Stone Zoo before your visit to learn about the changes that have been implemented for your safety.
- Endicott Park (Danvers) says the earliest they will reopen is June 8. In the meantime they encourage residents to use the Danvers Rail Trail.
- Bradley Palmer State Park (Topsfield) has open walking trails and bike paths. No details released yet on when the Wading Pool may open this year.
- Harold Parker State Forest (North Andover) has open walking trails.
- Ipswich River Park (North Reading) has the walking paths, boat launch, and fishing areas open and athletic fields, tennis courts, basketball courts, skate park, and street hockey rink are anticipated to reopen on a staggered basis on Tuesday, May 26, with state guidelines in effect. (Full details posted here.)
- Masconomo Park (Manchester-by-the-Sea) is open for walkers only and parking is for residents only.
Drive-in Movie Theaters
- Burke’s Tumbling Academy in Swampscott has converted their parking lot. Most of the shows are sold out until late June. $20/car. Book tickets here.
- The Kowloon Restaurant on Rt 1, in Saugus, also announced plans to open a summer drive-in movie theater and carhop earlier this month, but no official date has been set.
Other Business Types
Retail stores can reopen for curbside pick up only, as can libraries. Though so far the only local branch that has confirmed this service to TNSM is the TOHP Burnhan Public Library in Essex. (Residents of Essex can call or email to set up their pick up.)
Also included in Phase 1 are outdoor gardens, hair salons, barbershops, pet groomers, houses of worship and recreational boating. Health care providers may provide high priority care as well as routine pediatric care (including well visits and vaccines). Read the full Reopening Massachusetts report here.
Please note that even though things are starting to reopen, we encourage you to go at your own pace and stick to what’s most comfortable for your family. If you’re not ready to leave the house yet, or are unable to, don’t worry. We’ll continue to post virtual events and activities to our website and social media pages all summer long. Check out our virtual events calendar now.
We will also continue to update this post as more details on area attractions and businesses become available. If we missed a location you think should be included, please email [email protected] so we can add it. Stay safe!