What about the parks in Lake Geneva?
With the worldwide (and local) fear, due to the Coronavirus pandemic, extreme measures were taken by city officials to close its most visited parks. Library and Flat Iron Parks were closed to encourage social distancing. People still came, filling sidewalks and curbsides around the lakefront. Alderperson Flower was the first to ask about the reopening of the parks so the visitors and residents alike, who can now only move through the parks on the sidewalks, can spread out.
The city council met on Monday night and the re-opening of the parks was discussed in detail. Cindy Flower voiced concern about the parks and suggested reopening. The mayor and city staff had been discussing the possibility of just that. Mayor Klein had concerns about the bathrooms and making sure they can be cleaned safely. The bathroom issue is a valid concern, although in previous years the bathrooms typically do not open until middle to late May. The public bathroom schedule is staggered, with the Lake Geneva Visitor Center open all the time (except during the corona crisis). Seminary Park bathrooms normally open May 1st, the facilities at the west end of Library Park open the middle of May, and the Library bathrooms usually open when the beach opens, which is the week of Memorial Day. The beach is staffed and ready to open, following all state emergency guidelines, as soon as the green light is given. The bathrooms will follow that Memorial Day schedule if the emergency orders allow for that on that date.
“We are the children.”
The City of Lake Geneva is primarily about its people, but it also includes its business infrastructure, services, attractions, and tourists. When the city is working together, the residents have accomplished things that the residents could not have done by themselves and everyone has benefitted from those accomplishments. Some residents have contributed more than others and some have benefited more than others, but everyone has benefitted some and nearly everyone is better off because of what the residents of the City of Lake Geneva have accomplished since it was formed.
In good economic times, the city’s residents argue for personal wants and over what the city should be doing or should not be doing; however, in difficult times the focus changes from “wants” to taking care of the “needs” of the city and its residents. These days comprise some of those difficult times when the city needs to reassess its priorities and determine what expenditures and what actions are needed to address the city’s current needs with the funds that are or will be, available. How the residents and the city council will respond and recover from the current financial difficulties caused by the Coronavirus is not known, but since good people become better people in difficult times, the city and residents will weather this storm and make the City of Lake Geneva an even better and more understanding place to live after the Coronavirus threat is gone than it was before it arrived.
Many local businesses are preparing plans, policies, and guidelines for the “safe at home” rule currently being lifted.
Employers are deciding if they will require employees to wear masks and gloves and if business hours will be changed. Any changes decided by the businesses will need to be relayed to consumers so they will know the proper procedure prior to entering. Some local businesses are prepping for these changes. Small retail businesses are opening with strict guidelines. The East Troy Railroad Museum will be requiring patrons to sit in every other seat, to stand six feet apart while waiting for the train, and workers will be required to wear a face mask. Lake Geneva Cruise Line is also preparing for its new policies, by setting up boats with seating set up for families to sit together, but six feet apart from other groups. This will allow families to enjoy the lake tour while maintaining physical distancing. The city is preparing to limit the number of people on the beach, if it does open, and to allow for physical distancing. Many changes are coming, but hopefully, everyone will be able to enjoy everything the surrounding communities have to offer sooner rather than later this year.