As soon as parks reopened, Richard Thompson resumed playing recreational volleyball with his usual teammates at De Anza Cove on Mission Bay. While there was confusion about whether or not group sports were prohibited at parks, there also seemed to be confusion about masks.
That's because Thompson was the only person wearing one.
“Perhaps as we are playing out here, perhaps it’s still not allowed. Perhaps the park rangers are not enforcing it,” said Thompson. “That’s fine that you don’t care at all about wearing a mask, but I wanted to make it very clear that you are putting me in danger and I don’t appreciate it."
The most recent updated city website listed group sports as allowed in open space parks within same households, or while social distancing. Wearing masks is required.
Thompson had not addressed the issue with his dozens of teammates, the city or county before reaching out to NBC 7.
“I think we are being pretty safe. It’s a little breezy out here so if anyone’s breathing hard -- No one is coughing. No one is showing symptoms or anything,” said Neil White.
Even with a spike in COVID-19 cases, wearing a mask or not is still up for debate for many.
“I just don’t feel uncomfortable out here with this group. We all definitely wash our hands plenty,” said Scott, another player in the group.
Richard's aware he could get people in trouble, and that he also has the choice to stay home.
“As much as I love it, the safety of people is much more important. You have to take a stand sometime, somewhere in your life,” said Thompson.