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Officials Ahead of Fourth of July Holiday: Have Fun and Be Careful

Alecia Orsini
Officials are telling locals and visitors to enjoy themselves but be safe.

The fourth of July brings hundreds of thousands of visitors to the region.  But this year, officials on the Cape Cod Re-Opening Task Force are urging people to have their fun and be careful.

A successful fourth of July weekend on the Cape will involve face masks, social distance, and good weather.  

State senator Julian Cyr, who chairs the task force, hosted a morning call, where he said: those who choose to gather in large groups and ignore the precautions put working Cape Codders at risk.

“It’s really unfair and it’s profoundly disrespectful and that sort of behavior is what could potentially arrest the very positive and good trends we’ve been seeing,” Cyr said. 

Sean O’Brien, Barnstable County health director, says there’s more than enough beach to go around… the question really comes down to parking, and timing. 

“It’s a summer on Cape Cod and if you don’t get to the beach by certain time you may not get in there. So it could be similar in ways to seasons previous but I think as much as we can, people will have access,” said O’Brien.

On beaches, he said, everyone is still expected to gather only in small groups and wear face masks when social distancing isn’t possible.  

In Barnstable county, the numbers of new COVID-19 cases each day are down to the single digits. 

But public health officials warn the progress could easily be lost without vigilance. 

Meanwhile, businesses on Cape Cod are eyeing the upcoming Fourth of July weekend with high hopes, after the painful months of enforced closures.

Wendy Northcross, of the Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce, says this weekend the business community is looking for a surge in tourism could carry through to the rest of the summer. 

“We’re pleased to look at advanced reservations for the 4th of July time frame. Of course the holiday falling on a Saturday presents a bit of a unique opportunity to spread the business from this week into next,” said Northcross.

The majority of summer visitors to Cape Cod have historically come from Massachusetts and other New England states where COVID-19 cases are steadily declining. 

Eve Zuckoff covers the environment and human impacts of climate change for CAI.