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Campbell Co. Slowly Reopening Camping; Approves Parking Spaces for Outdoor Dining

Camping at A.J. Jolly Park and Campground is set to open on June 11, Assistant Campbell County Administrator Kim Serra said Wednesday.

The park system partially reopened last week for pass holders to come and enjoy most activities, she said, but playgrounds and shelters remain closed. Bike and kayak rentals have resumed, and season and daily passes are on sale again. "We are ecouraging people to buy passes online or over the phone," Serra said, noting that there will be park rangers at their stations also available to sell passes.

When the campground opens, it will be at 50 percent capacity, Serra said. There will be no yurt rentals this year because they would create an additional cleaning responsibility for county staff.

The parks were largely shuttered by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Bathrooms at the campground will be open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and will be cleaned every two hours.

As of now, the only concessions set to be sold are ice and firewood. "Eventually we hope to be able to offer other concessions" like fish bait, Serra said.

"At this point, we are going to start small and work our way up and hope everyone cooperates with the precautions we need to take."

The county fiscal court on Wednesday also approved a temporary lease with the Baker's Table, a restaurant in Newport that operates next to the county building on Monmouth Street. The county will lease three parking spaces so that the Baker's Table can expand its outdoor dining opportunities.

While indoor dining has resumed in Kentucky after being closed by the pandemic, restaurants are limited to 33 percent capacity right now, forcing them to lean more heavily on outdoor eating, which is unlimited as long as social-distancing can be maintained.

County Administrator Matt Elberfeld said that the lease began immediately on Wednesday and runs through October 31.

-Michael Monks, editor & publisher

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