Memorial Day weekend lake goers excited to get in the water despite second COVID-19 spike


CENTRAL ARKANSAS (KARK) — Despite the governor announcing an increase in COVID-19 cases, Saturday’s good weather attracted people eager to jump into lakes.

“We’re out here today because we’ve been stuck in the house way too long,” said Joshua Smith. “We had to get out.”

The perfect ingredients for Memorial Day weekend.

“It’s definitely been a nice day because I’ve been wanting to swim for awhile now,” said Gracie Smith.

Joshua Smith and his family and friends couldn’t resist kicking off their holiday, and they weren’t the only ones.

“We thought it would be nice to go kayaking or hang out on the lake or enjoy all the beauty that Arkansas has to offer,” said Sam Ortiz, who traveled from Louisiana.

Ortiz was excited to finally take advantage of an ease on travel restrictions.

“For memorial day, I tend to gravitate towards the water,” Ortiz said. “In Louisiana, unless you know somebody that has a boat it’s hard to get out on the water. So typically we come here.”

Oritz wasn’t bothered by the more than 40 other people also out in at Lake Catherine. Neither were the Smiths.

“I don’t really have any concerns because we take the proper precautions and keep the right spread everything should be fine,” Joshua said.

“We haven’t gotten close to anybody here really,” Ortiz said. “When we were out in the water, we were like 10-15 feet away from people.”

During Saturday’s press conference, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced the state saw its second peak of cCOVID-19 cases and is urging everyone to be smart.

“This memorial weekend we want to be out, we want to enjoy ourselves, we want to remember this holiday,” Hutchinson said. “But let’s be safe and let’s be disciplined at the same time.”

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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