POLK COUNTY, Iowa – Hundreds of people gathered at Big Creek State Park this Memorial Day.
Altoona resident Traci Almaguer said her family decided to come to the beach to enjoy the weather and get out of the house.
“I’ve been nervous about going anywhere and just making sure that I remind them how to self distance and use hand sanitizer and stay six feet away and still just try to enjoy ourselves,” Almaguer said.
Almaguer and her family found a quiet place away from the large crowds to social distance themselves at the beach.
Ankeny resident Kathy Collins said her family comes up every year to Big Creek State Park for Memorial Day weekend, but this year they decided to not have their extended family for safety.
“I was surprised at the number of people that were congregating together. I thought there would be a few more people adhering to the social distancing,” Collins said.
The state park asks groups to have ten or less people together and to follow social distancing guidelines.
Grimes resident Kenna Oliver said her family came to go swimming and the pandemic has brought her sisters closer.
“Probably since we are all sisters we’ve been bonding a lot more and doing things together instead of with our friends,” Oliver said.
The state park has its playground and shelters closed off to the public. People can use the boat ramps, beach, campgrounds and bathrooms.