Independence Day is Saturday, and celebrations are expected to be a lot quieter this year, and San Diego County leaders are taking a step back on reopenings and reminding people to follow public health orders as coronavirus cases increase.
“This is very different than what we’d usually be doing,” said Roger Andrews, who was visiting Mission Beach. "Typically, we’d be home, celebrating with family and friends
So what will the holiday look like? Well, private gatherings of any size are prohibited, except with members of the same household, according to public health orders -- that means no backyard barbeques with friends or families you don't live with. Andrews said he and his immediate family are taking precautions to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
“We’re just going to lay low and keep our social distance as best we can,” Andrews said.
In San Diego County, beaches, parks and campsites are open to the public, and recreational rentals -- like bikes, paddleboards, kayaks and other watercraft -- are also permitted.
Anyone celebrating outside their home is required to maintain physical distance and wear a mask when they can’t guarantee staying apart 6 feet from others.
“Be careful, wear your facemask, stay 6 feet apart, be safe,” said Richard Collier, who recently moved back to his hometown of San Diego.
Other people, though, may not be as compliant.
“They haven’t enforced it on me, personally...," said Mission Beach resident Elijah. "I noticed you guys are wearing masks. Why? I'm 65. I got crushed lungs and a compromised immune system. God will protect me."
A spike in positive COVID-19 cases, however, will be enough to keep some people away crowds this holiday.
“I don’t think it's maybe been taken seriously enough," said Linda Day, who was visiting Mission Beach for the day with her boyfriend. "Kind of scary times right now.”
Bars and breweries that do not serve food will be closed, after county leaders ordered the closure, which is effective Wednesday, as will wineries that are unable to serve outdoors. In addition, Supervisor Greg Cox announced that restaurants serving food with alcohol must now close between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. every night through July. While those already in the establishment can stay until 11 p.m. no new patrons will be seated.