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March 13, 2020 4:09 PM

COVID-19 Update- Emergency Child Care Centers; Program and Facility Impacts

As the entire world grapples with COVID-19, the novel coronavirus, we want to update you on its continued impacts on our parks and programs.

Effective at the close of business today, we will be suspending all regular indoor programming in our recreation centers and Department-operated clubhouses. Beginning Monday, March 16, 37 recreation sites around the city will operate as emergency child care facilities in the wake of public school closures and other safety measures the City is undertaking around COVID-19.

The facilities will serve children of Department of Public Health staff; health care workers from San Francisco hospitals; and city employees who have been activated as Disaster Service Workers. Our facilities will serve grades K through 5, Monday through Friday, from 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., through March 31.

The Office of Early Care and Education will continue to provide support and guidance for existing private childcare providers for children ages 0-5. The Department of Children, Youth and Their Families (DCYF) will be providing three meals a day for all children at these facilities.

Detailed information on emergency youth care locations, eligibility and registration can be found at

In addition to the suspension of regular recreation programming, Recreation and Parks is also closing all swimming pools and suspending all community meetings, volunteer events, indoor permits, and athletic field permits (including all games, practices, clinics, tournaments and any other activities that would cause individuals to gather in close proximity), effective March 14, through the end of the month.

Here’s a recap of previous coronavirus-related impacts on our parks and programs:

• The Sharon Art Studio, Conservatory of Flowers, and the Carousel in Golden Gate Park are closed through the end of March. Annie’s Hot Dogs, adjacent to the Carousel, will remain open.
• All San Francisco Youth Baseball League (SFYBL) games are cancelled through March 31
• The remainder of the Indoor Soccer League season is cancelled, including games scheduled for March 15 and March 22
• Summer day camp registration, originally scheduled for March 21, is postponed. Date TBD.
• The Golden Gate Park Senior Center remains closed.
• All citywide senior programs are suspended.
• The handball courts in Golden Gate Park are closed.

All other parks, trails and open spaces remain open at this time. Community members are encouraged to use our parks, but not to congregate.

Your Health and Safety are Our Priority

We are saddened that these impacts directly affect your enjoyment of our parks and programs, particularly because so many of our facilities serve as important neighborhood hubs and provide essential services to our residents. However, we believe that these steps will protect those in our community who are the most vulnerable. We are grateful for your continued understanding and support.

The facts that contributed to this difficult decision are as follows:

• The scientific community is in agreement that slowing the rise in new cases through social distancing is critical to containing the virus
• An exponential growth in cases could overwhelm our healthcare system, which is why early action is necessary
• This decision was made in alignment with SFUSD’s decision to close public schools for the next three weeks

Do Your Share to Help Slow the Spread of COVID-19

Remember, the best ways to reduce risk of getting sick, as with seasonal colds or the flu, still applies to prevent COVID-19:

• Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
• Cover your cough or sneeze.
• Stay home if you are sick.
• Avoid touching your face.
• Try alternatives to shaking hands, like an elbow bump or wave.
• If you have recently returned from a country, state or region with ongoing COVID-19 infections, monitor your health and follow the instructions of public health officials.
• Vulnerable individuals, which is defined as 60+ years or who have health conditions such as heart disease, lung disease, diabetes, kidney disease and weakened immune systems, are recommended to limit outings, avoid large gatherings, telecommute if possible, stay home if they are sick and avoid people who are sick.
• There is no recommendation to wear masks at this time to prevent yourself from getting sick.

We encourage you to stay informed on the coronavirus by texting COVID19SF to 888-777 or by visiting

Be safe and be well.

Read Mayor London Breed's PRESS RELEASE

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Latest Update:

March 16, 2020 11:41 AM

As the entire world grapples with COVID-19, the novel coronavirus, we want to update you on its continued impacts on our parks and programs.
The city and state have issued orders or guidance to prevent or restrict group gatherings in public places.

For this reason, all permits through March 31 have been cancelled. Effective immediately, we will be suspending issuance of any permits until we have clarity on when facilities gatherings can recommence. This includes:
- Indoor permits of any type, including pools, clubhouses and recreation centers
- Athletic field permits

If you need to reach us about canceling or refunding a reservation, please email

Prior Updates

March 13, 2020 4:45 PM

The Department will also close Coit Tower and the Japanese Tea Garden as further precautions against the spread of COVID-19, the coronavirus, effective at the close of business today, March 13, 2020, through the end of the month.