Spring Break 2022: What to know before hitting Alabama’s beaches
The calendar has officially moved to March, which means spring and spring break are right around the corner.
Whether this Spring Break is your first Spring Break on the beaches since the COVID-19 lockdowns in 2020, or you’re just making the annual pilgrimage to the beaches, you should make sure you know the rules around parking, alcohol and the further you go.
The city of Gulf Shores will continue its beach alcohol ban this year, which was first imposed in 2016 after numerous arrests for alcohol, drug use and more.
The news isn’t too surprising once you remember some of the events that took place during spring break that year. One of the most notorious was when a Texas spring breaker threw a football into a large crowd and towards the police.
Said spring breaker was later arrested for the action.
This year’s six-year ban began on February 28 and will run until April 18, which coincides with most local and regional school spring breaks.
As for parking, the paid parking season at some public city beaches resumed on March 1 and will continue until November 30.
You can park publicly at Gulf Place, West Beach, West Sixth Street, and Little Lagoon Pass for $5 for up to four hours or $10 a day.
Cash and cards are accepted at payment terminals, but they do not give change. Gulf Shores residents and property owners who have a 2019-2020 hurricane return sticker can park for free in all paid public parking lots, according to a statement from the city.
Overnight parking is prohibited in all public car parks.
Orange Beach warns visitors that their town is not a spring break party town.
“If you’re looking for a party town, the town of Orange Beach is not it,” the Orange Beach Police Department said. published on facebook Monday afternoon. “If you choose to break the law, you will go to jail.”
Besides underage drinking, illegal drug use, and other typical crimes, the police department also warns people not to:
- Have glass containers on the beach
- Sleep in their car or on the beach
- Leave chairs and tents on the beach after sunset
- Having loud and offensive music and noise on the beach or in their bedroom
- Drinking alcohol on the beaches of Alabama State Park
- Dig big holes on the beach or bring steel shovels
To address potential issues, the City of Orange Beach will be closing a portion of Perdido Pass Beach during Spring Break. This first happened in 2021.
According to Orange Beach Mayor Tony Kennon, the beach closure is intended to create a “sanctuary city for families” during the season.
“We eliminated that area so we don’t have all these spring breakers messing around,” Kennon said last year.
This particular area is notorious for being overcrowded and closing this part of the beach will make it easier to control what happens on the beaches, according to Kennon.