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Cooler weather attracts reduced crowd to Pismo Beach

Pismo Beach
Beachgoers take in the sun and sand Saturday afternoon near the Pismo Pier. (Dave Alley/KEYT)

PISMO BEACH, Calif. -- One week after a big turnout along the Pismo Beach shoreline, on Saturday, crowds were noticeably smaller.

"It's a reduced crowd out here on the beach," said Police Chief Jake Miller. "When we got the weather we go last week, we're going to get a pretty good showing of local, any maybe, not so local folks."

Last weekend, temperatures soared into the lower 90's, attracting a big crowd of locals, plus many tourists from outside San Luis Obispo County.

However, on Saturday, temperatures hovered in the mid-60's all day, with an offshore breeze creating much cooler conditions.

"It's wonderful," said Kim Powell of Hanford. "Getting some fresh air. It's a wonderful to be outside and be at the ocean. Who wouldn't want to be here?"

Chief Miller said the lower temperatures and cool breeze will typically reduce the number of locals at the beach.

Around the Pismo Pier area, many visitors said there were from outside the area, mostly the Central Valley, cities like Fresno, Visalia, Hanford, Tulare, Bakersfield, and other places just a couple hours away.

"It feels good," said Jose Arredondo of Lindsay. "It's really hot where I live right now."

While statewide shelter at home orders ask residents to limit all non-essential travel, visitors said they came to Pismo Beach for a much-needed respite.

"It's a dream come true," said Isaac Perez of Visalia. "Definitely with everything that going on, in the Central Valley, we can't go fishing, we can't go hiking, so we've been isolated inside, so this is a sight for sore eyes."

While last weekend brought a lot of people to the beach, city officials said nearly everyone was complying with physical distancing requirements.

The city emphasized there were no citations given out during the busy two-day period.

On Saturday, Chief Miller said people were once again following the rules.

"If you look, you see plenty of distance between folks," said Miller. "We appreciate people taking the self compliance seriously, keeping that distance is of the utmost importance."

By now, people understand the significance of maintaining at least a six-foot space between others.

"It's really important," said Arredondo. "There's a lot of people who have died from this disease. It's really serious. I take it serious too. I'm staying six feet distance from people."

Just in case people were not paying attention to distancing guidelines and other restrictions, Pismo Beach police were out on patrol with extra enforcement.

"We are trying to keep up on our patrols out here on the beach to make sure people keep the distance," said Miller. "We're just out here reminding folks to stay apart and they're doing it pretty well."

Beachgoers are also mindful of what happened two days ago when Gov. Gavin Newsom closed all Orange County beaches.

It was feared Newsom was going to close beaches statewide.

Instead, beaches like Pismo Beach remain open, much to relief of those taking in the sand and sun on Saturday.

"I feel very fortunate," said Powell. "I feel like we all need to get out and live a little bit of some kind of normalcy, especially for our children."

And big kids too, are also looking for some normalcy, as well spending some time having a little fun, during what is a very challenging time.

"It's for your health," said Perez. "I'm out here running around, playing. I've seen kids run, parents out here walking dogs. It's definitely part of society to kind of keep this open and keep things going."

California / Community / Environment / Lifestyle / Safe at Home / San Luis Obispo County / Travel / Weather News / What's Right

Dave Alley

Dave Alley is a reporter and anchor at KCOY|KEYT|KKFX.