Thoughts on masks in Rehoboth Beach

July 21, 2020

On July 3, I watched a Rehoboth Beach Boardwalk webcam to determine what the mask-wearing compliance rate was on the day that Mayor Kuhns’ order requiring masks was in effect.  About two-thirds of the Boardwalk pedestrians were wearing masks, but only half of them were wearing masks correctly (covering the mouth and nose). 

Masks hanging on one ear, around the neck, or on the top of the head were common.  One lady took her mask off after coming from the beach and used the outside of the mask to wipe sweat from her face. 

A mask-less man walking from the beach onto the Boardwalk sneezed into the path of a mask-less family of five. 

A young mask-less couple was walking past a Rehoboth Beach police officer who gestured to put a mask on.  The male of the couple made an obscene gesture back to the officer and the couple kept on walking.  

On July 9, I returned to the same webcam.  The crowd size on the beach and Boardwalk was about half of what I saw July 3.  Groups on the beach were nicely spaced and people on the Boardwalk maintained a social distance. 

The mask compliance rate seemed better, up to 75 percent, and most people were wearing their masks correctly.  

The reputation and economic future of Rehoboth Beach are now dependent on wearing masks correctly to reduce COVID-19 transmission.  Citizens, business owners and visitors must continue to develop a culture of caring and compliance.  Masks are not perfect, but they are one important barrier protecting us from this dreaded disease.  

The Fasnacht family should be praised for their proactive, comprehensive opening plan for Funland.  Everyone going to Funland should help the staff assure compliance.  Other businesses and the City of Rehoboth Beach could emulate this plan to further establish a culture of compliance in Rehoboth Beach.  

Gary A. Colangelo, DDS, MGA
Rehoboth Beach
former chair of the Delaware Oral Health Coalition
retired dental director for CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield
  • Cape Gazette commentaries are written by readers whose occupations, education, community positions or demonstrated focus in particular areas offer an opportunity to expand our readership's understanding or awareness of issues of interest.

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