By HANNAH SIEVERT
CENTRAL OREGON DAILY
Beautiful weather expected for Labor Day weekend means both tourists and locals will be spending time outside.
“We know a lot of people will be coming to Bend this weekend to enjoy the nice sunny weather,” Jeff Hagler, park stewardship manager for Bend Park and Recreation, said.
Hagler and his stewardship team will work this weekend to keep both the tourists and locals socially-distant and masked.
The team will focus on working in crowded areas, like Drake Park and Riverbend Park, and they’ll hand out masks to people who don’t have one.
“If it’s getting crowded, we go in and say hey, we’re glad you’re here, just as a reminder, take a look at that sign and we’d love you to be safe,” Hagler said.
The stewardship team, which brought on additional staff in April, has handed out more than 600 masks in Bend parks this year.
If people refuse to comply with mask or distancing requirements, the team could call Bend Police. Hagler said they haven’t had to do that yet.
“The majority of people are great and will comply when they understand what the rules are,” Hagler said. “There’s always a percentage who do not and that becomes a more difficult situation.”
For this upcoming weekend, Hagler asks people to consider finding a less crowded trail or park to spend time in. People should remember to bring water, as most water fountains have been shut off.