San Diegans turn to outdoor options amid regional stay-at-home order

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SAN DIEGO – Despite many of their favorite spots shuttering under a regional stay-at-home order, San Diegans still are trying to take in all the community has to offer.

At the city’s Barnes Tennis Center, 16-year-old Carlsbad resident Katie Codd continues to hone to her craft. Codd, the top-ranked girls tennis player in her age group, said she’s spent many hours training at the center, safely more than 6 feet from her nearest opponent.

“I’m definitely very happy that I can still practice and train like semi-normally because tennis is really important to me,” Codd said.

The regional stay-at-home order issued by Gov. Gavin Newsom went into place this week as San Diego County and much of California has seen COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations soar in recent weeks. New rules that went into effect Sunday restrict various industries, including restaurants which no longer can offer in-person dining.

Other industries such as personal care services and bars and breweries, among others, are forced to close under the order, which is expected to last three weeks.

But there are plenty of mostly outdoor venues exempt from the new order. Places such as beaches, piers and campgrounds as well as batting cages, miniature golf, shooting ranges and drive-in movie theaters are continuing to operate throughout the county.

“Tennis is definitely the safest out of even taken a walk because you could be walking with a group of people and passing them,” said Ryan Redondo, general manager of the tennis center and CEO of Youth Tennis San Diego, “and tennis you’ve got 78 feet from each other.”

Redondo said he is relieved the courts remain open. It’s given him confidence that the activity is safe, adding that the center is making regular adjustments to make players feel comfortable.

“There’s certain people that want to stay home and as a business we totally respect that,” he said. “We credit them and do whatever we can to take care of them, but there’s a lot of happy people to that can come out and play the sport.”

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