Jones Beach: The Land Of No

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jonesbeachIn the summer, Jones Beach State Park is always a nice place to visit. As I walked along the boardwalk at Jones Beach near Field 6, I began to notice all of these signs—signs that make it clear what you cannot do. The list includes no radio playing, no alcohol (which is understandable since it’s a family park), no dogs, no kites, no balloons and no drones.

There are also certain activities that visitors are forbidden from doing. No ball playing (I found this one to be outrageous). No balls and no kites at a beach that’s the perfect place to toss a ball or fly a kite.

One large sign announced “Swimming Prohibited,” which seems absurd, since that’s the one activity most people go to the ocean to do. There was a sign advising guests to be courteous when riding their bicycles. I was actually surprised to learn that park officials allow bike riding on the boardwalk. And, while I was relieved to not find that on a No sign, park-goers aren’t allowed to use in-line skates on the boardwalk.

Years ago when I was younger and would go to Jones Beach, we could do just about everything. Those days, people were respectful, so we could play ball and fly kites carefully without bothering other people. It’s the kind of courteousness that includes playing your radio at a volume so as not to bother others. Why is it so different now?

By the way, the Wi-Fi is free so why not go to Jones Beach and stare at your cell phone, which is something you can do at home. And, while you’re sitting on a beautiful beach with sand and water, there is not much you can do there, just be sure to check the signs.

—Sheila Ferrari

1 COMMENT

  1. I recall seeing most of those prohibitions decades ago. A lot has to do with the safety of others and respecting the ability of others to go and simply enjoy the ocean. If I go to the beach to decompress I want to hear the waves… not someone else’s choice in music. I do appreciate the irony of the prohibitions and the humor you’ve brought to the article. The no swimming -of course where there are no lifeguards on duty… a rip current could potentially drown you. As a sticker in the head (toilet) on a charter boat I worked on read “Don’t drown, it will ruin your day”…

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