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As of March 25, Branford playgrounds and outdoor courts are closed, and use of parks, trails and opens spaces restricted to social distancing rules, as an effort to combat COVID-19. Shown here is the playground at Branford Point/Parker Memorial Park. Pam Johnson/The Sound | Buy This Photo)
A work crew removes basketball rims at an outdoor court at Hammer Field in Branford. All outdoor basketball rims were removed from town courts as of 8 a.m. March 28 to further deter groups gathering to play at the courts, which closed March 25 as a COVID-19 precaution. (Photo courtesy Alex Palluzzi )
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Three days after COVID-19-required closures of all Branford playgrounds, outdoor sports courts, basketball, tennis and pickle ball courts became effective March 25; the Parks and Recreation Department furthered the effort to deter gatherings by removing all basketball rims at parks on Saturday, March 28.
Parks and Recreation Director Alex Palluzzi said the rims were removed by 8 a.m. on March 28 to help residents continue the practice of social distancing and to adhere to Governor Ned Lamont's recommendation to limit groups to less than five.
A March 25 community message regarding the closure of the town's playgrounds and courts noted those are also areas that should be "avoided." The Parks and Recreation Department also issued safe social distancing requirements and practices for anyone visiting a park, natural area or trail for the purposes of walking, hiking, biking and running.
While regular exercise and remaining active is still being encouraged, the decision to close the Town's outdoor recreational facilities is due to the fact that "....unfortunately, these activities cannot be conducted while maintaining a safe distance or avoiding repeatedly touching objects touched by others," according to the message.
Those using hiking trails, parks and other open spaces are being reminded to keep 6 feet away from others at all times, including interacting with others in the vicinity.
"If you can't maintain that distance, find another location or come back at another time," the message stated.
Those on trails are required to "...announce their presence to others and step aside to let others pass."
People exhibiting symptoms of any illness should stay home, and those visiting a park, trail, natural area or any other public space should follow Centers for Disease and Prevention guidelines to wash hands before and after their visit.
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