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Venice Beach Reopens With Loose Compliance And Enforcement

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Venice Beach was less crowded than usual on its first day of reopening. Josie Huang/KPCC
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Hare Krishnas twirled on the boardwalk, reggae musicians hawked their CDs, and graffiti artists sprayed new designs dreamt up during quarantine.

Venice Beach showed glimpses of its old self Saturday, but L.A.’s iconic counter-culture vortex was decidedly more subdued than usual.

“I would say it's like 70% less than what this weekend would bring normally,” said Los Angeles Police Sgt. Theresa Skinner, who oversees the department’s Venice Beach detail.

That made it was possible to keep a wide berth from one another on the beach, though much harder on the boardwalk. Some protected themselves with face coverings as has been recommended by authorities, but some did not.
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Police were educating beachgoers about face coverings rather than citing them.

Mayor Eric Garcetti said Friday that city beaches would continute to stay open for 'active use,' use such as surfing, swimming and jogging, as well as cycling along the newly-reopened bike paths. He discouraged sunbathing, but that didn't stop beachgoers from just doing it. And why not, when you won't get a ticket for breaking the rules?

Joudi Hamed, a Citrus College student from Glendora, was among those who showed up to lounge on the sand.

“You’re going to get it at some point,” Hamed said of COVID-19. “Might as well enjoy life."

READ MORE

The Tourists Are Missing, But Venice Beach Is Still A Draw

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