IPSWICH — Town officials have fielded some complaints about a large gathering at a home on Route 1 where visitors have been seen not wearing masks or maintaining social distance, but say they cannot take any action to stop it. 

That’s because the gathering, a memorial service that began last week, is taking place in the yard of a private home at 72 Turnpike St. (the local name for that section of Route 1). 

While there is a paving business located at that site, it is also a private residence. 

The governor’s gathering order and mask order do not apply to a yard of a private residence, the town’s health director, Colleen Fermon, said in an email Thursday.

“There is no limit to the number of people that can be in a private backyard,” said Fermon. “There is no order for masks that applies to a private back yard, although we strongly encourage people to social distance and wear masks.”

Courts reporter Julie Manganis can be reached at 978-338-2521, by email at jmanganis@salemnews.com or on Twitter at @SNJulieManganis.

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