Texas reopening water parks, mall food courts with restrictions

Texas reopening water parks, mall food courts with restrictions

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) on Tuesday announced that the state's water parks, drivers education programs and food courts will be allowed to reopen at reduced capacity this week.

The Lone Star State’s water parks will be allowed to reopen at 25 percent occupancy, while drivers  education programs can resume effective immediately. Adult recreational athletic programs will be allowed to resume Sunday, although games and other competitions will be prohibited through June 15.

Food court dining areas will be allowed to immediately resume operations, Abbott’s office said, but the governor’s office added that malls should designate a person or people to limit tables to six people and maintain a 6-foot distance between people sitting at different tables. The notice also strongly encouraged malls to clean and disinfect tables between uses and make sure no condiments are left on tables between uses.


Last week, Abbott announced that child care facilities and bars would be allowed to reopen, while restaurants would be allowed to reopen at 50 percent capacity after initially allowing them to reopen at 25 percent capacity.

Texas is among a number of states that have seen increases in coronavirus cases since it began the process of gradually reopening, reporting 1,801 new cases, its largest one-day increase up to that point, in mid-May. State officials have said the increase is largely attributable to targeted testing of meatpacking workers in Randall and Potter counties, which accounted for 734 of those cases.

Despite the increases, Abbott has highlighted the declining infection rate and stable hospitalizations, also pointing to increased testing last week, although it was revealed last week that the state had included an unknown number of antibody tests in state testing.