July 4th beachgoers hit Narragansett, many not wearing masks

NARRAGANSETT, R.I. (WLNE) — July 4th was a busy beach day in Narragansett.

“Crowded but not overcrowded, and less than would’ve been last summer,” said Nicholas Rocco of North Providence.

Some beachgoers managing to find creative ways to social distance.

“They put a line in the sand around them, like six feet around them, to make sure no one else would get in their little area,” observed Ian Pilitzer, visiting from Marlboro, NJ.

Yet on the sand masks were few and far between.

“People are trying not to get the mask tan, so they keep the mask off in the sun,” Pilitzer said. “It also gets hot in there. When you’re sitting in the circle of people you probably live with or have been with, people are feeling a little more safe without the masks.”

But not everyone feels that safe. Two nurses, Emory Farb and Evie Jenins of New Haven, say they got tested for COVID before coming to Narragansett, and concerned to see the vast majority of beachgoers not wearing masks on the sand.

“You have to think of the present in order to think of the future,” Farb said. “If you want to have another summer where everyone’s breathing down your neck saying, ‘social distance,’ you have to think of the precautions you’re taking right now.”

“It seems like this distant thing that’s going on and you don’t have a connection to it, so it doesn’t seem real,” Jenkins said. “But for us, it is real.”

Rick Cohen says he walks the beach every day he’s here — and COVID-19 is real for him too.

“I’m in the age group if I catch it, it could kill me and the people around me,” said Cohen, of Sharon, Mass. “I’m seeing too many of the young people here not thinking about it. My mind is always on the virus, and I see too many young kids, they don’t think about it at all.”

Categories: Coronavirus, News, Regional News, Rhode Island