The city of Bakersfield is closing basketball, tennis and pickleball courts in public parks in an effort to stop the spread of the new coronavirus.
While the parks themselves will remain open, the city said Friday that members of the public would not be allowed to use the courts, in a closure that will be in effect until further notice.
The city said signs will be posted around the courts, and the rims of basketball hoops at courts without fences will be removed to prevent people from using them.
In a news release the city advised residents to also avoid touching the playgrounds, outdoor exercise equipment, picnic tables and benches at public parks.
The decision was made to limit social gatherings and promote social distancing, the city said in the release.
Hoops Removed at Legendary NYC Basketball Courts as a Coronavirus Precaution
The basketball court at Rucker Park in Harlem is considered hallowed ground for some of the greatest players in the game.
On Thursday, it was empty, which seemed surreal for people who live in the neighborhood.
Earlier in the day, the hoops at the Rucker Park court and at 79 other basketball courts across the city were removed at the order of Mayor de Blasio.
Most of the people who spoke with NY1 on Thursday about the decision were not pleased.
This was true even with the knowledge that the move was made in an effort to promote social distancing amid the spread of the coronavirus.
“I know we have something serious going on. We have a virus and it’s getting a lot of people sick, especially in NYC, but the kids need stuff, they need activities,” said one woman.
“I can see that they are doing it for people’s safety and health, but I just think it’s unfair,” said a 17-year-old girl.
On Wednesday, the Mayor announced his plan to remove the hoops.
He said the courts selected for removal were chosen based on information from the NYPD and NYC Parks Department.