March Madness has an all-new meaning in 2020. All sort of crazy is happening in the world and in our little beach town. With the spread of the coronavirus combined with our inability to self-police and stay home; some new & hopefully temporary rules are in place in the city of Cocoa Beach. Here is what is going on in the city of Cocoa Beach.
Beach parking, the city parking lots and beach parking lots (The Cocoa Beach Pier, Lori Wilson, Alan Shepard, Sidney Fischer Park, etc) throughout Cocoa Beach are closed. This is to discourage the spring break crowd and other folks wanting to visit and hang out on the beach. If you move a cone and park your car; they will tow it! For now, the beaches are still open, you just cannot park near the beach.
There is a temporary ban of alcohol on the beach. You could receive a $500 fine if caught with alcohol on the beach.
All our bars are closed for at least 30 days. All restaurants are carryout only. Quite a few restaurants are closing on their own to do their part to encourage people to stay home.
The city pool is closed. The Racquet Club is closed (you can play tennis, but the pro shop and restrooms are closed) Pickleball has been canceled. The golf course is open BUT the 19th hole is not open.
All city events (Friday fest, sip & stroll, etc) have been canceled through April.
City Hall has locked the lobby. Any business with the city needs to be by phone or email. Here is a link to the website for more info. http://www.cityofcocoabeach.com/27/Government
Publix and Winn Dixie have limited store hours and will be setting up Senior shopping. Publix hours are 8-8 with Senior shopping Tuesday and Wednesday from 7-8 am. Winn Dixie hours are 8 am-9 pm with Senior shopping 8-9 am Monday through Friday.
The Governor just ordered all gym’s and fitness centers closed.
I have had a few people ask me how this will affect the real estate market. I am pretty sure it will have some type of impact, but it’s too early to say how bad it will be. Real estate statistics are always done on the previous month’s sales. We were about halfway through March when things really got crazy around the coronavirus. It will be the beginning of May or even June before we see how the sales are affected. I will have a complete update after the first of April to have a baseline for the real estate market to see where things are going.
How bad the economy, both for the nation and locally; along with how bad the real estate market is hit is hard to say at this time. I have no doubt there will be severe damage based upon the businesses closing, people not working, and the stock market dropping. It really depends on how long it takes the coronavirus to flatten out before we can really see all the damage that has been done and can have an educated guess on the recovery. We will get through this.
I am thankful for our local city leaders putting in place the above restrictions. The city of Cocoa Beach is doing a great job to make certain we are safe. Thank you to Mayor Ben Malik and city council members Ed Martinez, Karalyn Woulas, Skip Williams, & Mike Miller. Thank you to Chief of Police Scott Rosenfeld and all of the CBPD. Thank you to the Fire Chief Ryan Duckworth and the crew of CBFD. And finally, a big thanks to Jim McKnight for steering the ship and looking over our beachside community.
What can we do as a responsible citizen to help? We need to heed the warnings and recommendations that have been provided. Besides washing our hands, we must keep our distance from each other for the next 2-3 weeks (Stay at home?). This small sacrifice could make a difference with the spread of the coronavirus. We all need to work towards flattening the curve of the coronavirus.
Be safe. Be smart. Be calm. Remember to smile. A smile is contagious too. We will get through this.
If you haven’t seen the video below, it’s worth the 51 seconds of your time. We need to listen to the recommendations of Max Brooks, and #DontBeASpreader.
About the author:
Eric Larkin is a Broker Associate with REMAX Aerospace. He lives, works, and plays in the Cocoa Beach area. Eric has been helping buyers and sellers with their real estate needs since becoming a real estate agent in 2003. His focus is always on helping, answering your questions, and doing everything possible to make certain you have a smooth transaction from beginning to end.
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