Washougal reopens Lower Hathaway Park after six-week closure

Steamboat Landing, Sandy Swimming Hole remain closed due to COVID-19

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The city of Washougal has re-opened Lower Hathaway Park, which had been closed since late March due to the outbreak of COVID-19.
Opening the park will “allow citizens to recreate by the Washougal River,” according to a news release issued by the city of Washougal.
“As we move further into the spring season, we know that sunny weather is on the way. This provides the opportunity for all of us to get outside and enjoy our beautiful area,” Washougal city manager David Scott wrote in a statement released Thursday, May 7. “I encourage (residents) to take advantage of our open parks while following social distancing guidelines so that we can keep them open for all of us to enjoy.”
Sandy Swimming Hole Park, the Steamboat Landing Dock, and the city’s playgrounds, restrooms, sports courts/fields, and picnic shelters will remain closed until the third phase of Washington Gov. Jay Inslee’s recently-implemented “Safe Start Washington” plan, according to a news release issued by the city of Washougal.
“If we are to stop this virus, it is critical to continue to comply with social distancing,” the news release states. “During this time, people may continue to exercise and spend time outdoors. When outdoors, everyone should practice social distancing and remain 6 feet or more away from anyone from not living within their household.”
On Tuesday, May 5, Inslee announced an extension of his “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” proclamation through Sunday, May 31, and the “Safe Start Washington” plan, a four-phased approach to re-opening the state’s economy.
“We are currently in Phase 1, and it is hoped that we will move to Phase 2 by early June,” Scott wrote. “That decision depends upon several factors related to the spread of and response to COVID-19, as described in the governor’s plan. Several activities have been opened up in the last week, including some outdoor recreation; drive-in spiritual services; resumption of existing construction; landscaping businesses; automobile sales; retail curb-side pick-up; car washes; and pet-walking businesses.”
Scott wrote that city leaders “understand that the continuation of the governor’s proclamation until the end of this month is impactful to our community.”
“We continue to empathize with the uncertainty of when things will open up according to the new ‘Safe Start Washington’ plan,” Scott wrote. “We acknowledge that there is differing opinion about how quickly we should re-open our state, but we are encouraged by the ‘light at the end of the tunnel’ represented by the ‘Safe Start Washington’ plan as we gradually reopen, and encourage everyone to continue to ‘Stay Home, Stay Healthy’ this month.”
All city facilities will be closed to the public until the third phase of Inslee’s plan goes into effect, and council meetings will remain on a virtual platform until the third or fourth phase. The city is still open for business, but with limits and protocols in place consistent with guidance for appropriate social distancing.
“The situation will continue to evolve, and our response will continue to change accordingly. We will share additional information and updates as they are available,” Scott wrote. “These measures ordered by the governor and implemented by Washougal and cities across Clark County are impactful, but are intended to continue to stop the spread of COVID-19 and safely reopen our communities. It is vitally important that we all stay informed, stay calm and work together to keep our community safe and healthy in order to safely reopen.”