NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — It’s the first day of fall, but with summerlike weather expected for the first weekend of the season, lifeguards will be back on duty at some beaches.
With Mother Nature serving up midsummer temperatures, Jones Beach State Park Director Kevin Connelly said it will be open to welcome visitors who aren’t ready to say goodbye to summer.
“It’s going to be one of the last big gasps of summer, and so we want people to come down and enjoy the beachfront. It’s been a beautiful summer so we said one more time,” Connelly said.
And it was clear not everyone is ready for fall.
“You know what you can do with pumpkin spice?” Resa Scalone, of Garden City, joked.
“People were talking about winter when school started. No, September’s always beautiful.”
This isn’t the latest Jones Beach has ever been open for bathing.
“There was one year we were open all the way to Columbus Day, which is into October,” lifeguard captain Don Kramer said.
Friday was a bit on the cooler side, but that didn’t keep beach bums away.
Robert Pagliocca drove all the way to Jones Beach from Rockland County.
“I drive 70 miles each way, and it’s worth it,” Pagliocca said.
Maribeth Whitehouse is a New York City schoolteacher and had the day off, so she made her way to the beach to enjoy some peace and quiet.
“It’s a beautiful day,” she said. “There’s hardly any people here, and September is the best month for the water — it’s still warm, the air is still warm. Don’t tell people. I don’t want them to come.”
On a typical summer weekday, Kramer said 20 guards stand watch over the water and on a weekend 30. They’ll have six to keep beachgoers safe this weekend.
Dorothea McFarland said she wishes she had the inside scoop that lifeguards would be watching over the shoreline. She said instead of gazing upon the ocean, she would have been in it.
“It’s absolutely gorgeous down here today,” she said. “The water is so warm. I didn’t realize there would be lifeguards or I might’ve come for a last swim.”
Temperatures throughout the weekend will be in the low to mid 80s with ample sunshine. Water temperatures will be in the upper 60s to low 70s.
However, swimmer should note the rip current risk will be high throughout the weekend.