Many indoor activities in New Jersey can reopen next week, but not all

TRENTON, New Jersey (WPVI) -- On Wednesday Governor Phil Murphy announced more re-openings for New Jersey on July 2: museums, aquariums, libraries, and indoor recreation facilities like bowling alleys, shooting ranges, batting cages and boardwalk arcades can open at 25% capacity.

Gyms can open only for personal training sessions by appointment.

Movie theaters, nightclubs and concert venues must remain closed for now.

As amenities reopen just in time for the holiday weekend, state officials are urging caution.

"We have to continue with our social distancing. We have to wear the face coverings. There are no excuses to let up even one bit. We are far from defeating COVID-19," said Murphy.

According to the Action News data journalism team, Cumberland and Atlantic Counties have seen an uptick in cases in the past week, and now have the highest infection rates in our area - both with higher rates than Philadelphia and New Castle County, Delaware.

RELATED: Travelers to New Jersey from states with high COVID-19 rates are told to isolate
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New Jersey will require visitors from states with high infection rates to quarantine for 14 days.

Atlantic County Health officials say the recent uptick in cases is likely due to an increase in mass testing with vulnerable populations including those in long term care facilities, as well as migrant workers.

County officials say there has also been a backlog of cases going into the state data system.

Cumberland County Health officials say those numbers don't represent community spread because they include positive cases in the three state prisons and a federal prison in that county.

We spoke with Atlantic City visitors about their comfort level as things reopen.

"We're basically walking around. If we see crowds we move to the other side and put our masks on. But other than that we feel pretty safe. The lifeguards were out, we were in the water," said Lisa Headley from Manhattan, N.Y. who has spent the past several days in Atlantic City with her family.

Patti Shenberger from Northeast Philadelphia says she chooses not to wear a mask on the boardwalk, but she is paying more attention to her surroundings and avoiding people.

"I'm going to keep washing my hands and staying away from people who are sick, paying attention. If I see someone over there coughing I'm not going over there," said Shenberger.

At Steel Pier in Atlantic City, workers are testing rides, as they prepare to open on July 2 at 50% capacity, with some new protocols.

"Each operator is going to have a mask on. They're going to wipe the ride down after every cycle. And we're going to do every other car," said Chuck Catanoso, co-owner of Steel Pier.

Murphy also announced that NJ Transit rail and light rail service will return to a full weekday schedule on Monday, July 6.

More details are at

Also Wednesday, Murphy joined the governors of New York and Connecticut to anoounce their states will require visitors from states with high coronavirus infection rates to quarantine for 14 days upon arrival, beginning Thursday.
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