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City of Rochester
201 4th Street SE
Rochester, MN  55904

Phone: 507-328-2900
Fax: 507-328-2901
TDD: 507-328-2900

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Rochester Parks and Recreation Department Announces Facility and Maintenance Changes for Summer

Post Date:05/20/2020 9:55 AM

The Rochester Parks and Recreation Department announced that parks play structures and playgrounds are now open.  This includes the skate park at Silver Lake Park.  Playgrounds and the skate park will not be sanitized and users can play at their own risk.  Users are encouraged to wash hands before and after play and to stay home if they are feeling sick. In addition, users are required to follow all social distancing guidelines. 

The Parks and Recreation Department also announced that Foster Arend Beach, Silver Lake Pool and Soldiers Field Pool will be closed this summer.  The level of public congregation that takes place at aquatic facilities and the level of staff required to operate these facilities limit possibilities for opening and managing these facilities safely this summer.

Financial impacts resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic will require changes in maintenance standards throughout Rochester’s 102 parks and 100 miles of trails.  Safety of participants will continue to be the top priority. 

  • The Parks and Recreation Department will focus efforts on maintaining playground equipment, structures and other park amenities.
  • Priority will be given to trees on public property that are diseased or are otherwise in unsafe condition.
  • Mowing will take place on a less frequent basis and some areas in the park system will remain un-mowed.
  • Golf courses will increase “no-mow” areas.
  • Sports fields will be kept at a minimum standard until restrictions are lifted on games and practices.
  • Some Flowerbeds and other landscaped areas will not be maintained.

Paul Widman, Director of Parks and Recreation, shared, “These changes are difficult to implement considering the pride that our team takes in maintaining Rochester’s parks and recreation system. The changes are in response to a nearly $2.4 million in revenue loss to the Parks and Recreation Department due to COVID-19.”

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