The Jersey Shore’s beaches will be OPEN for sunbathing and recreation just in time for Memorial Day Weekend, but things will look drastically different than they have in the past. 

The state’s governor, Phil Murphy, just made the announcement during Thursday’s press coronavirus conference in Trenton.

There will, however, be significant changes from the usual beach trips that many of us are used to.

From face masks to amusements and social distancing, here’s a breakdown of what to expect at the shore this summer:

SOCIAL DISTANCING:
The number of beachgoers allowed on any beach or lakefront will be restricted because social distancing measures will be extended to the state’s beaches. Local leaders will determine the method that can best determine the capacity of their beaches. However, you can expect the enforcement of these rules.

Beach access can NOT be restricted to residents.

“All visitors must have the ability to enjoy our state’s greatest natural resource,” the governor said.

Beachgoers will be expected to stay 6-feet apart unless they are a family, a couple, or caregivers.

SPORTS AND EVENTS:
The measures prohibit all contact sports and organized events that would bring crowds to the shore (including festivals and firework displays).

BOARDWALK FOODS:
Boardwalk restaurants will be open for take-out and delivery only, Governor Murphy announced.

BOARDWALK AMUSEMENTS:
Amusement parks playgrounds and visitor centers must remain closed, for the time being.

FACE MASKS:
The state’s measures will not officially require beachgoers to wear a face mask.

However, Governor Murphy emphasized that they are HIGHLY recommended… especially in areas where social distancing isn’t possible (standing in a line on the boardwalk, etc.).

RESTROOMS:
Restroom facilities, changing areas, and shower pavilions will be open as extensive sanitization efforts remain ongoing.

WHAT’S NEXT?:
Governor Murphy said officials will continue to monitor the data and caseload in the coming weeks. He is hopeful that some restrictions could be eased in the future.

“This is not a life sentence, we could have a dramatically different reality next month,” Murphy said.

He does caution, however, that restrictions could be expanded if the data suggests otherwise.

Today’s announcement comes as state officials say they’ve worked closely with officials from many of the shore towns across the state’s four-county coastline.

“This was a truly collaborative process,” Murphy said on Thursday. “We want everyone to have fun.”