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'If you love the coast, stay home for now': Oregonians urged to enjoy Memorial Day weekend at home

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown and a group of mayors from around the state are asking everyone to resist flocking to Phase 1 counties to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

PORTLAND, Ore. — Gov. Kate Brown and a group of 26 mayors from across Oregon are calling on everyone in the state to “keep it local” and stay in their own communities this Memorial Day weekend to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Thirty-one Oregon counties have been in Phase 1 of the governor’s reopening plan for nearly a week. On Friday, Marion and Polk counties will begin their limited reopening.

Brown and the mayors (full list below) are urging everyone, especially people living in the Portland metro area, to resist flocking to Phase 1 counties on the coast, in the Columbia Gorge and in central Oregon, warning that a flood of visitors could trigger a new COVID-19 outbreak and overwhelm resources.

“If you love the coast, stay home for now and plan your trip in the summer. If you love the Columbia Gorge, keep it local this weekend and visit later on. If you love Central Oregon, it’ll still be there in a few weeks,” said the letter from leaders around the state.

Instead, Brown and the mayors are asking people to stick to small gatherings where they live and safely support local businesses in their communities.

RELATED: 'Our phones are already blowing up': Marion, Polk county businesses ready for Phase 1 reopening

Read the full letter below:

“Together we are asking all Oregonians to please keep it local this Memorial Day. Be good neighbors this weekend––stay local and stay safe.

“If you love the coast, stay home for now and plan your trip in the summer. If you love the Columbia Gorge, keep it local this weekend and visit later on. If you love Central Oregon, it’ll still be there in a few weeks.

“This Memorial Day weekend, a backyard barbecue or a small family gathering is the best way to stay healthy as we build a safe and strong Oregon. If you want to get outdoors, find a place to hike or bike or paddle close to home. And, please, wear a face covering when you are around others.”

Signed by:

Governor Kate Brown
Cannon Beach Mayor Sam Steidel
Seaside Mayor Jay Barber
Lincoln City Mayor Dick Anderson
Astoria Mayor Bruce Jones
Florence Mayor Joe Henry
Newport Mayor Dean Sawyer
Tillamook Mayor Suzanne Weber
Coos Bay Mayor Joe Benetti
Wheeler Mayor Stevie Burden
Gearhart Mayor Matt Brown
Bandon Mayor Mary Schamehorn
Yachats Mayor W. John Moore
Depoe Bay Mayor Robert Gambino
Garibaldi Mayor Judy Riggs
Warrenton Mayor Henry Balensifer
Ashland Mayor John Stromberg
Klamath Falls Mayor Carol Westfall
Redmond Mayor George Endicott
Bend Mayor Sally Russell
Willamina Mayor Ila Skyberg
Newberg Mayor Rick Rogers
McMinnville Mayor Scott Hill
Eugene Mayor Lucy Vinis
Springfield Mayor Christine Lundberg
Cascade Locks Mayor Tom Cramblett
Hood River Mayor Kate McBride

RELATED: Dissecting Phase 1 of Gov. Brown's reopening plan for Oregon