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Can community gardens open? What social distancing policies are required?

Last Updated: 08/10/2020

Community gardens may reopen so long as they implement reasonable restrictions that reduce physical interaction.

In addition, all gatherings in gardens must comply with the rules placed on outdoor gatherings, which limit capacity to no more than 500 people and requires social distancing.

Other requirements for outdoor gatherings include:

  • Individuals should wear face coverings at all times when social distancing is difficult to maintain;
  • Limit capacity to no more than 500 people at all times;
  • Require attendees to be six feet apart at all times, excluding immediate family members, caretakers, household members, or romantic partners;
  • Prohibit contact between attendees;
  • If the event is an organized gathering, the organizer should demarcate six feet of spacing in the area of the gathering to demonstrate appropriate spacing for social distancing;
  • Prohibit sharing of any physical items provided and require sanitization before and after each use; and
  • Require contactless pay options wherever feasible.

For more on mandatory requirements for outdoor gatherings, refer to section 2 of Executive Order No. 152.

NOTE: There are no limits on outdoor gatherings for First Amendment-protected activities, such as political protests of any persuasion or outdoor religious services.

To save lives and stop the spread of COVID-19, wear a mask, wash your hands, practice social distancing, and stay home if you are sick.

Face coverings are required in indoor public spaces and in outdoor public spaces when social distancing is difficult to maintain.

Sources: https://nj.gov/governor/news/news/562020/approved/20200518c.shtml; Executive Order No. 133; Executive Order No. 152; Executive Order No. 161