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Restrooms, cabins, campgrounds among facilities to close at ODNR properties due to COVID-19 concerns

Posted at 5:16 PM, Mar 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-23 17:22:57-04

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Under Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine’s stay at home order that goes into effect Monday night, outdoor activity is permitted and state parks will remain open—but many of the additional facilities at the state parks will not, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, ODNR will be closing campgrounds, cabins, golf courses, restrooms, shower houses, playgrounds and state park marinas at every ODNR properties across the state.

The closures come in an attempt to slow the spread of COVID-19. They will take effect begging Tuesday, March 24.

Public outdoor spaces at state parks, preserves, wildlife areas and forests will remain open. Trails, dog parks and non-marina docks will remain open.

ODNR reminds those visiting these locations to practice social distancing and common sense, providing the following suggestions for those visiting ODNR property:

  • Follow CDC’s guidance on personal hygiene prior to heading to trails — wash hands, carry hand sanitizer, do not use trails if you have symptoms, cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, etc.
  • Observe at all times CDC’s minimum recommended social distancing of six feet from other people. Practice it and know what it looks like. Keep it as you walk, bike or hike.
  • Warn other trail users of your presence and as you pass to allow proper distance and step off trails to allow others to pass, keeping minimum recommended distances at all times. Signal your presence with your voice, bell or horn.
  • Note that trail and park users may find public restrooms closed — be prepared before you leave and time outings so that you are not dependent on public restrooms.
  • Bring water or drinks — public drinking fountains may be disabled and should not be used, even if operable.
  • Bring a suitable trash bag. Leave no trash, take everything out to protect park workers.

The ODNR additional facility closures are temporary and will remain in effect until COVID-19 guidelines change or are lifted.

RELATED: Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, Dr. Amy Acton issue 'Stay at Home' order for all of Ohio