Coronavirus in N.Y.C.: Latest Updates

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It’s Friday. We’re off on Monday for Memorial Day, but we’ll be back on Tuesday.

Weather: Some sun early, but showers arrive in the evening; high in the low 70s. The holiday weekend starts wet but gets nicer, with highs in the upper 60s.

Alternate-side parking: In effect on Friday and Saturday, and then suspended through June 7. The city may extend the suspension past June 7 based on street cleanliness and the availability of the work force.

Two months into the coronavirus pandemic, with hundreds of thousands of people out of work, nearly one in four New Yorkers needs food, Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Thursday.

To address the problem, the city plans by next week to increase to 1.5 million the number of meals it distributes each day, officials said, with a million to be delivered and 500,000 available for pickup at schools.

Before the virus hit, Mr. de Blasio said, officials believed that “somewhere over a million” city residents “were food-insecure, needed food more, at some point in the year.”

As a result of the pandemic, he said, “we think that number is two million or more. So almost a doubling. That’s why we have made food such a central part of what we do in response to this crisis.”

The city has been expanding its food-distribution efforts for weeks and has given out 32 million meals during the crisis, the mayor said.

“The more we look, the more we find it,” Mr. Cuomo said at his daily news briefing. On May 12, the state was investigating 102 cases.

The condition, which the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has labeled multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children, often appears weeks after infection in children who did not experience first-phase virus symptoms.

Instead of targeting the lungs as the primary virus infection does, it causes inflammation throughout the body and can severely damage the heart.

Most the children found to have the illness in New York so far have tested positive for the virus or antibodies to it, Mr. Cuomo said.

Researchers are examining whether the infected children were genetically predisposed to the syndrome, the governor added.

[What’s reopening in New York and the region.]

Pandemic or no, and a spotty weather forecast notwithstanding, summer beach season begins on Friday with Memorial Day weekend. But many beaches in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut are closed. At the ones that are open, a day at the shore will be very different.

Those seeking sun, sand and sea face a patchwork of restrictions. Here is a guide:

  • New York City: Mr. de Blasio has said that the city’s beaches, including those at Coney Island and on the Rockaway peninsula, are open only to nearby residents who want to take a walk on the sand. Swimming is prohibited, as are gatherings or parties of any kind, and the mayor has repeatedly urged people not to travel to get to the beaches.

    Riis Park and Fort Tilden in the Rockaways, which are part of the Gateway National Recreation Area and are run by the National Park Service, will be open only for “passive recreation” like walking and running. Parking lot capacity will be capped at 50 percent.

  • Long Island: Concerned that city residents closed off from their own beaches might head east, officials on Long Island have moved to restrict access to their shores to residents only. As a result, access to Suffolk and Nassau County beaches will require proof of residency.

    Beaches across New York State are required to cap capacity at 50 percent. Long Beach, which has often drawn beachgoers from New York City, will sell beach passes only to residents. The boardwalk will be open with social-distancing rules.

    State-run beaches, including Jones Beach and Robert Moses State Park, miles-long expanses that draw many city residents, will be open, with limited parking.

A new state bill would allow to-go cocktails, even when the coronavirus lockdown is over. [Gothamist]

One artist in Brooklyn is painting encouraging messages on storefront windows. [Brooklyn Paper]

What we’re watching: Kevin Delaney, a senior editor for New York Times Opinion, discusses Times Opinion’s “America We Need” project on “The New York Times Close Up With Sam Roberts.” The show airs Friday at 8 p.m., Saturday at 1:30 p.m. and Sunday at 12:30 p.m. [CUNY TV]

The Times’s Melissa Guerrero writes:

Although most performance spaces, museums and community centers are closed, people are finding creative ways to connect through virtual events and programs. Here are two suggestions for maintaining a New York social life this weekend while keeping a safe distance from other people.

At 12:30 p.m. on Friday, join Nalleli Guillen, a Brooklyn Historical Society historian, and Mary Mann, a project archivist and reference associate, as they explore the history of an American Indian statue that once stood outside a cigar shop in Brooklyn Heights. The event is part of the Bite-Size History series, which highlights intriguing objects in the society’s collection.

R.S.V.P. for the livestream on the event page.

From 6 p.m. on Friday to noon on Sunday, watch more than 150 artists, filmmakers, poets, puppeteers and more perform at this festival, which started in 1996 as a three-day, indoor and outdoor event but this year has gone virtual.

Visit Theater for the New City’s website for more details.

It’s Friday — get creative.

Dear Diary:

I needed to get out and burn off some energy, so I decided to take a long and fast walk.

At a nearly empty intersection, I heard rockabilly music coming from a car that was waiting for the light to change.

“I love rockabilly music,” I yelled to the driver as I was crossing the street.

When I got close to the other side, I turned and saw that the driver had opened his door a bit so that I could keep enjoying the music while he waited for the light to turn green.

I was itching to dance, and it was as if he had read my mind.

Stepping onto the curb, I put my bag down and began to boogie. As the light changed, I stopped dancing and did a quick high kick.

“Thank you,” I yelled as the car drove away. “I really needed that.”

— Vivian Awner

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