Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes ofwebsite accessibilityCOVID-19 concerns close Oconto County-owned boat landings, campgrounds and more | WLUK
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COVID-19 concerns close Oconto County-owned boat landings, campgrounds and more

Pier at North Bay Shore Park, April 8, 2020 (WLUK/Eric Peterson)
Pier at North Bay Shore Park, April 8, 2020 (WLUK/Eric Peterson)
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OCONTO COUNTY (WLUK) -- If you want to launch your boat at an Oconto County-owned boat landing, you may be out of luck.

The Oconto County Health Department has ordered all launches, campgrounds and some ATV-routes to close due to COVID-19.

The signs are up, the gate is locked, and the only way into North Bay Shore Park, is on foot. Terry Schuler traveled from Manitowoc County to do some walleye fishing on Wednesday morning, but couldn't.

"I got a very good friend of mine with me today, and we haven't fished together for a while. I was excited about getting him out there. So this is very disappointing," said Terry Schuler, Osman

"This is a difficult time for all of us. We're having to change our behavior and change what normally we do," said Debbie Konitzer, Oconto County Health Officer.

Konitzer says the decision to close the North Bay Shore boat landing came Saturday.

"There were 104 vehicles. They represented 34 counties, three states. There were no Oconto County residents parked there. However, over half of the vehicles that were there, were from counties that have 10 or more cases. So that's where our concern is, that there are people coming to Oconto County that are coming from areas that there is a high incidence of the illness," she said.

Konitzer says all County-owned ATV-UTV road routes are off limits until further notice. And the county's campgrounds, expected to open on May 1, will likely stay closed as well.

The latest closure ties in with another health department statement issued on April first, urging visitors to stay away from their seasonal homes and properties.

Back at the boat landing, Terry Schuler is looking for another spot.

"We're going to try to find someplace else that we can launch, and do some fishing today, hopefully," he said.

The closures are in effect until further notice.

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Editor's note: This story has been updated to reflect that the number of vehicles at the North Bay Shore boat landing was 104, not 140.

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