QA/Mag file photo: Because of crowds and gatherings taking place at city parks and beaches despite the shelter-in-place order, the City of Seattle has closed parking lots to its destination parks, including Discovery Park in Magnolia.
QA/Mag file photo: Because of crowds and gatherings taking place at city parks and beaches despite the shelter-in-place order, the City of Seattle has closed parking lots to its destination parks, including Discovery Park in Magnolia.

In an effort to encourage social distancing and reduce the number of congregating crowds, the city of Seattle has closed parking at the eight destination parks, closed all beaches to gatherings and prohibited access to Rattlesnake Lake Recreation Area and Rattlesnake Ledge Trail near North Bend.

The Seattle Parks and Recreation eight destination parks are Green Lake, Lincoln, Golden Gardens, Seward Park, Magnuson Park, Gas Works, Alki Beach and Discovery. All Seattle beaches will no longer be open for gatherings, however they will remain open for walking or general exercise. Residents are encouraged to visit the 479 local neighborhood parks or to bike or walk to these destination parks, which will remain open for public use.

Staff will be at these locations to remind people to follow social distancing guidelines at these popular parks as well as locations such as Cal Anderson and Volunteer Park. Seattle Parks and Recreation Superintendent Jesús Aguirre said in a press release that if residents do not maintain six feet of space between them, the city will have to close parks.

“We still want people to be able to enjoy our parks during this stressful time, but we have seen many of our parks have become too busy to allow folks to properly create social distance,” he said.

Seattle Parks and Recreation asks residents to:

Use social distancing

Do not access off-limits equipment or areas: 

Seattle and King County have closed all play areas and other high touch areas, such as picnic shelters, tables and outdoor exercise equipment.

Do not congregate in parks, which means no pick-up games, no picnics, barbecues, parties or bonfires.

Maintain six feet for activities: People can keep hiking, biking and walking in parks as long as they give wide berth to fellow residents.