Sea Splashing Tips this Holiday Weekend
St. Johns County officials are projecting capacity beach crowds for the Memorial Day Weekend and they would like to remind Historic City News readers of the variety of services available to make their visit more enjoyable.
St. Johns County beachfront parks offer free parking at a variety of locations including Mickler’s Landing, South Ponte Vedra Recreation Area, North Beach Park, Vilano Pavilion, Ocean and Fishing Pier Park, Butler Park East, and Crescent Beach. Visitors should plan on arriving early in the day and consider carpooling, bicycling, or walking to these parks as facilities are expected to reach capacity.
While St. Augustine Beach, Butler Beach, and Crescent Beach normally offer vehicle access and on-beach parking, officials anticipate access will only be granted to four-wheel-drive vehicles during the holiday weekend, due to an excess of soft sand.
Vilano Beach will remain open to two-wheel drive vehicles; however, that may change as the hard-packed beach reaches its limited capacity. St. Johns County Beach Services, St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office, and The City of St Augustine Beach Police will monitor conditions throughout the weekend and notify local Historic City News reporters as any necessary adjustments to beach access are enforced.
Chairs, umbrellas, and fishing gear are available for rent at the St. Johns County Ocean and Fishing Pier. The pier gift shop will be open from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. and offers a variety of products including ice cream, sunscreen, and cold drinks. Parking at the pier is expected to reach capacity so guests are urged to seek alternative transportation. New bicycle facilities, provided by Velo Fest, are available on the north side of the parking lot adjacent to the boccie ball courts.
Beach wheelchairs are available for free on a first-come, first-serve basis. Those interested in renting a beach wheelchair during this holiday weekend are asked to call the Beach Services office at 904.209.0344 no later than 5 p.m. on Friday, May 23.
Memorial Day Holiday Schedule:
All departments of the St. Johns County Board of County Commissioners, Administrative offices, Public Library, Solid Waste Management, and the Pet Center will be closed Monday, May 26th and resume standard hours Tuesday, May 27. Garbage, recycling, and yard debris collections will not be impacted and the Tillman Ridge and Stratton Road Solid Waste scale houses will be open.
Marine Rescue Beach Kickoff This Weekend:
St. Johns County Fire Rescue will begin full-scale guarded beaches Saturday, May 24th. A team of USLA certified lifeguards will guard SJC beaches from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. daily. Please take notice of beach flags and signage at access points and lifeguard towers for daily condition updates, rip current information and other beach hazards