News Department

Morris County parks and trails open but facilities closed

MORRIS COUNTY, NJ – With the evolving situation surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19), the Morris County Park Commission provided an update and information for our park patrons.

Starting today, March 17, the Park Commission will conform to Gov. Murphy’s Executive Order No. 104 related to non-essential recreational entities, occupancy/gatherings of less than 50 people, and hours of operation between 5:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m.

With more than 20,000-acres of parkland, 38 distinct park facilities and 4,400,00 million visitors per year, the park system is taking the conservative approach of limiting access to park facilities because it cannot ensure the high level of disinfection and sanitizing across the park system.

Here are the specifics:

  • Grounds of all General Parks & Trails will remain open, however, it should be understood that playgrounds, benches, picnic tables, etc… will not be disinfected;
  • All indoor/outdoor programs throughout the park system to be cancelled thru March 31;
  • All park permits throughout the park system are being rescinded thru March 31;
  • All buildings (except on golf courses at this time) will be closed the public, including Visitor Centers, Mennen Sports Arena, and park restrooms (there are portable restroom in most parks. Please bring personal sanitary supplies).
  • All Historic Sites; Fosterfields Living Historical Farm, Historic Speedwell and Cooper Mill, are closed for winter season until April 4. Any special events or programs planned for the off-season are cancelled;
  • Mennen Sports Arena will be closed thru March 31;

Lee’s County Park Marina will remain open at this time.

Horticulture Facilities; Bamboo Brook Gardens, Frelinghuysen Arboretum, Willowwood Arboretum: the Grounds & Trails will remain open but there is a potential Frelinghuysen Arboretum will close.

Environmental Education Centers; Great Swamp Outdoor Education Center, Pyramid Mountain Natural Historic Area, Elizabeth D. Kay Environmental Center: Ground & Trails will remain open

Golf Courses will remain open and Billy Casper Golf is implementing a number of protocols including but not limited to the following;

1)  Moving from accepting cash to “credit card only” transactions.

2)  Food & Beverage operations are closed.

3)  Allowing golfers who ride in carts to take their own cars if desired and available.  If walking only is desired that is fine, too.

4)  Posting signs on Port a Johns advising guests to use personal hygiene materials.

5)  Additional cleaning of all touchpoint areas throughout the day such as door handles, countertops, etc..

The Park Commission understands that county residents rely on county parks and that they will become even more become important places to reduce the stresses of today’s environment. When visiting the parks, residents are strongly encouraged to adhere to CDC protocols especially as it relates to social distancing and actions to prevent the spread of germs.

The Park Commission will continue to assess operations and consult with the various Health Management institutions for recommendations and possible further changes. For updates on cancellations and facility closures continue to visit  If you have any questions or concerns please send an email to

People are encouraged to visit the Morris County Office of Health Management website for information on COVID-19.

Jay Edwards

Born and raised in Northwest NJ, Jay has a degree in Communications and has had a life-long interest in local radio and various styles of music. Jay has held numerous jobs over the years such as stunt car driver, bartender, voice-over artist, traffic reporter (award winning), NY Yankee maintenance crewmember and peanut farm worker. His hobbies include mountain climbing, snowmobiling, cooking, performing stand-up comedy and he is an avid squirrel watcher. Jay has been a guest on America’s Morning Headquarters,program on The Weather Channel, and was interviewed by Sam Champion.

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