A popular beach is opening Monday — but you have to live in town to go

“It is our hope to welcome the general public back to this beautiful beach in the near future," a Manchester-by-the-Sea official said.

Manchester, MA., 06/27/14, The cliffs and white sand at Singing Beach are a beautifil backdrop for Maureen Cary, cq. For a story on Cape Ann as a vacation destination. Section:Magazine Suzanne Kreiter/Globe staff  (The Boston Globe.
Manchester-by-the-Sea's Singing Beach. –Suzanne Kreiter/Globe staff

Manchester-by-the-Sea’s Singing Beach, which Jetsetter magazine named one of the best beaches in the U.S., will open Monday but only to the town’s residents, officials announced Friday.

In a virtual meeting this week, the Manchester Board of Selectmen voted unanimously to reopen Singing Beach in phases “to preserve public safety and to allow for proper social distancing,” according to a press release.

During Phase 1, which begins Monday, town residents can walk and run on the beach Monday through Friday, but cannot swim, picnic, or sunbathe, according to the town’s website. The beach, which is about 30 miles north of Boston, is a popular summer destination due to its proximity to the commuter rail station, officials noted.

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“Many beaches can limit their patrons by limiting the parking, but with Singing Beach, this is not the case due to the commuter rail,” the website reads.

Officials said they spent “months of planning and hours of discussion” about how to keep crowds down while opening up. They took into account the variations of beach size due to the tide, safe traffic flow with only one entry point, and the ability of beachgoers to remain six feet apart.

“It is our hope to welcome the general public back to this beautiful beach in the near future, but at this time we are taking the essential safety precautions necessary to keep the beach and staff from being overwhelmed, and that means reducing beach capacity to residents only,” said Cheryl Marshall, director of Manchester-by-the-Sea Parks and Recreation, in the press release.

Town officials said they’ll slowly loosen restrictions if Phase 1 is “accomplished without incident.”


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