Philly Coronavirus News: Philly Gets Masked, Picnickers Get Tossed, Recycling Gets Bumped

"A man wearing a face mask just walked past my house," said one Philly woman. "A week ago, that would have freaked me out. Now, I'm thinking, 'Gee, he's a responsible citizen!'"

A young masked boy plays basketball during the Philadelphia coronavirus crisis

A young masked boy plays basketball during the Philadelphia coronavirus crisis after the CDC issued new guidelines for wearing masks. (Photo by Victor Fiorillo)

A roundup of Philly coronavirus news.

Philly Gets Masked for the Coronavirus

The CDC has issued new guidelines for wearing masks during the coronavirus crisis. In short, the CDC “recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies) especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.”

And over the weekend, Philly began stepping up. Last week, the masked ones seemed to be among the minority, but a drive around various neighborhoods in Philly yesterday showed us that many Philadelphians are taking the whole mask thing seriously.

“A man wearing a face mask just walked past my house,” wrote one Philly homeowner on her community Listserv. “A week ago that would have freaked me out. Now, I’m thinking, ‘Gee, he’s a responsible citizen!’ Our world is changing so fast.”

Naturally, Philly-people-wearing-masks has become quite the “Instagrammable moment,” as they say.

Here’s Fox 29 anchor Alex Holley in her new mask:


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I also jumped on Facebook and Instagram, wondering if my deer-hunting balaclava makes the cut:


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I thought that it was a no-brainer — full nose-and-mouth coverage and a collar that goes tightly around my entire neck — but some of my Facebook friends weren’t so sure. Ah, the Internet.

Picnickers (and Others) Get Tossed from Public Park for Violating Coronavirus Stay-at-Home Order

Sunday was absolutely gorgeous, wasn’t it? Perfect day for a picnic in the park, right?


In case you missed it, Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney issued a stay-at-home order a while back due to the coronavirus. This means that you’re supposed to, ya know, stay at home.

Oh, there are exceptions. You’re allowed to go out to the grocery store. You can travel to and from your essential job. And you can even take a walk, hike, jog or bike ride — provided that you are maintaining proper social distancing.

Alas, picnicking is not on the list, as one couple in South Philly found out over the weekend. Philly cops “raided” a local park and tossed those picnickers and a bunch of others who were just hanging out in the park.

ICYMI: Philly cops can now threaten violators of the stay-at-home order with a $100 fine.

Philly Recycling Gets Bumped

A lot of Philadelphians complained last week when their trash pickup was late. Because, the thing to do in a major pandemic is call your councilperson or 311 to ask why your trash wasn’t picked up on time.

These people are going to just flip their lids this week.

The City of Philadelphia has announced that its recycling program will shift to an every-other-week schedule — starting next week. So keep that overflowing blue bucket away from the curb until next week.

Free Food Today

Last week, we showed you inside a box of free food that Philadelphia was handing out to residents. That program continues this week at a bevy of pickup points throughout the city. Find the complete list of food pickup sites here. You don’t need ID. Just show up.

Briefly Noted

“The Killer Flu of 1918: A Philadelphia Story” (NY Times)
“Can Philly’s Cheesesteak Giants Outlast the Coronavirus?” (NBC 10)
“High-income Philadelphians getting tested for coronavirus at far higher rates than low-income residents” (Inquirer)