Greenville residents still exercise despite park closures

Published: Mar. 28, 2020 at 1:27 PM EDT
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Greenville residents took advantage of the Greenways still being open to get out of the house amid coronavirus restrictions.

The City of Greenville shut down its playgrounds, shelters, and restrooms at city parks on March 23 to stop the spread of COVID-19. However, Greenways are still open for residents.

During the "Stay Home" order press conference, city officials still encouraged residents to get out and exercise.

The playgrounds at the Town Common were empty. No dogs filled the fences of the Off-Leash Dog Park.

Greenville Police units were continuously patrolling the area.

Cyclist Stanford Smith has used biking as his outlet and way to stay healthy for the past eight years.

"I'm trying not to let the fear overtake my life," said Smith.

Smith is 71 years old, which means he's a part of the high-risk group for the coronavirus, according to the CDC.

However, he still loves to bike with his wife at the Town Common Park. He says it's the best season to do so.

"We just love the Greenway; especially in the spring time when everything starts to turn green and new. And we like to see the turtles too," Smith said.

Janice Busher took a stroll with a friend at the South Tar River Greenway to stay social.

"It's just so nice to be out here and enjoy the day," Busher said.

She says she's trying to stay fit instead of cooped up in the house all day.

"You just try and stay healthy and walk every day. It decreases stress. It makes me feel healthier," Busher added.

Busher hopes everyone gets out of the house for their own mental health.

"Drive or walk to your park. Even if you're on your own, just get out there and you will feel so much better after you do this. I think you'll feel your stress level will come down. You'll be happier. And you'll stop thinking about coronavirus a little while," said Busher.

Governor Roy Cooper's "Stay Home" order is expected to last until at least April 29.