City of Salisbury closes zoo, parks, recreation areas

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan is asking Spring Break participants who are returning to the state to self-quarantine for 14 days and avoid people over the age of 60.

He is also urging people who go outside to avoid crowds, playgrounds and Pavilions.

“As of this morning, Maryland has 149 confirmed cases of COVID-19 — up from 17 cases just one week ago,” Hogan said.

“Today’s new cases in our state include the first infant and the first teenager. None of the cases of children under 18 are currently hospitalized. Two-thirds of our cases are between the ages of 18 and 64.”

The governor is increasing his call for further actions to be followed as the state navigates the current crisis.

“While we hope Marylanders will take advantage of today’s warm weather, we urge you to avoid crowds at all costs. Avoid all playgrounds, pavilions, and anywhere that groups of more than 10 people may congregate. Please do not take this guidance lightly.

“We are asking all returning spring break travelers to self-quarantine for the next 14 days, and to avoid people over the age of 60.” Hogan said. “Even though students are not returning to campus, this should not in any way be treated as an extension of your spring break. If you ignore this recommendation, you are endangering yourself and the health of others.”

Meanwhile, a new round of closings and schedule changes have been announced in the last 24 hours, dramatically affecting life for Lower Shore residents.

The University System of Maryland announced that its institutions — including Salisbury University and the University of Maryland Eastern Shore — will have its students completing the remainder of this semester’s coursework by phone conferences and online.

Seniors will receive their degrees but not in a typical commencement ceremony — something that is still being worked out.

In Salisbury, the city government has ordered the Salisbury Zoo and all city playgrounds closed until further notice. Outdoor spaces remain open and a great alternative for social distancing in a natural environment. Groups or gatherings of more than 10 people are prohibited.

The following park and recreational spaces will remain closed until further notice:

·         Ben’s Red Swings.

·         Salisbury Zoo.

·         Waterside Park Basketball Court and Playground.

·         Lake Street Park Basketball Court and Playground.

·         Johnson Lake Neighborhood Playground.

·         Doverdale Park Basketball Court and Playground.

·         Jeanette P. Chipman Boundless Park and Playground.

·         Play Area on west side of Bandstand.

·         Play Area on east side of Bandstand.

·         Picnic Island play structure.

·         City Park Tennis Courts.

·         Francis J. Tilghman Memorial Dog Park.

·         Comfort Safety Zone Playground.

·         Elizabeth W. Woodcock Park and Playground.

·         Newtown-Camden Tot Lot Park and Playground.

·         Newtown Park.

·         West Salisbury Little League Playground.

·         Salisbury Skate Park.

Concerning senior citizens services, MAC Inc., the Area Agency on Aging, will be closed to the public Monday-Friday, March 23-27

The building is expected to reopen on Monday, March 30.

As throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, MAC’s first priority remains the health and safety of staff, volunteers, and the senior community. The closing is for the purpose of disinfecting the building.

The home-delivery meals operation will continue as normal that week. In addition, staff will be available to respond to inquiries from the community and to offer assistance to the senior community, both via telephone. Call MAC at 410-742-0505.

The Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administration will close all branch offices statewide effective today at 4:30 p.m.

Branch offices will remain closed until further notice.

All previously scheduled appointments are canceled. Customers will receive correspondence when branch offices reopen and appointments are available again.

As always, Chesapeake Health Care’s highest priority is serving the health care needs of our communities. We are taking proactive measures to protect the health of our patients, families, and employees during this time.

Chesapeake Health Care, one of the area’s largest medical providers, is offering appointments via telemedicine to conduct remote appointments and sessions with medical and mental health care providers. Please call your office of care to schedule your secure online appointment for telemedicine.

Their number is 410-749-1015 or

Helpful Coronavirus links

Maryland Department of Health Coronavirus Page
CDC: About the Coronavirus Disease 2019
CDC: What to do if You Are Sick
Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center
AP News Coronavirus Coverage

Have a question about the coronavirus? Submit it to our newsroom and we’ll ask the appropriate public officials.

As your community newspaper, we are committed to making Salisbury a better place. You can help support our mission by making a voluntary contribution to the newspaper.
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