Brevard County beaches to restrict group sizes ahead of July Fourth

Groups will be limited to 10 or fewer

BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. – Three days from celebrating independence, the only restrictions on Cocoa Beach will be limiting groups to 10 people or fewer.

Mayor Ben Malik said local hospitals are not overrun with patients.

The mayor said that's the most important reason beaches will be open this weekend.

"We're keeping the beaches open," Malik said. "All we can ask people is to be considerate of their neighbors."

Yunaika Diaz from Orlando was at Coconuts on the Beach Wednesday, but she said she will not be coming back for the 4th.

Diaz also said she's traveled to the beach a lot during the pandemic, but this weekend feels different to her.

"I always come over often because I like the beach. Right now, I'm not coming back because I know it's going to be a crazy weekend," Diaz said.

Between March and May, there were times Cocoa Beach closed beaches on weekends and banned drinking on the beach.

Parking lots were also closed.

The city said it was trying to keep out-of-towners away during Spring Break.

Mayor Malik said the city is not prioritizing business by not having the same restrictions for July 4.

"We're just looking at the broader picture," he said. "A .09 percent infection rate doesn't warrant such drastic measures when there's plenty of hospital capacity."

The limit on group sizes will last for two months, but the mayor says there will not be penalties for groups larger than ten.

About the Author:

James joined News 6 in March 2016 as the Brevard County Reporter. His arrival was the realization of a three-year effort to return to the state where his career began. James is from Pittsburgh, PA and graduated from Penn State in 2009 with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.