Harris County to close parks countywide for Easter weekend, April 10-13

Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo signed an order April 8 to temporarily close all parks countywide throughout the upcoming Easter weekend, April 10-13, in hopes of discouraging social gatherings. (Hannah Zedaker/Community Impact Newspaper)
Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo signed an order April 8 to temporarily close all parks countywide throughout the upcoming Easter weekend, April 10-13, in hopes of discouraging social gatherings. (Hannah Zedaker/Community Impact Newspaper)

Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo signed an order April 8 to temporarily close all parks countywide throughout the upcoming Easter weekend, April 10-13, in hopes of discouraging social gatherings. (Hannah Zedaker/Community Impact Newspaper)

Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo signed an order April 8 to temporarily close all parks countywide throughout the upcoming Easter weekend, April 10-13, in hopes of discouraging social gatherings.

The decision follows Texas Gov. Greg Abbott's order to temporarily close state parks and historical sites beginning April 7 to curb the spread of coronavirus.

"For the longer term, it seems to me that folks have been doing quite well at not congregating and not playing sports—certainly I know everyone's closed down their benches, their exercise areas," County Judge Lina Hidalgo said during an April 7 Harris County Commissioners Court meeting. "I do have the concern, though, that for the Easter weekend, I do think that it would be prudent to just shut [the parks] down. I think we're just inviting a problem and we might as well cut that out for this weekend and then we can go back to ... the more relaxed standards. I just think with the Easter weekend, it's a risk we shouldn't run. We can't risk everyone coming together for a weekend and, if we can help it, we ought to."

Following discussion with Harris County's four precinct commissioners, Hidalgo formally announced the closure April 8.

"We are at a critical moment in our fight against COVID-19, and we cannot afford to let our guard down,” Hidalgo said in a statement. “We’re heartened that the actions we’re taking are already saving as many as 4,500 lives across Harris County. For so many of our residents, Easter and Passover is a time for spiritual fellowship with others, and I want to encourage that to continue at home and online during this critical period. The sooner we come through this together, the faster we’ll be able to return to normalcy and get our economy back up and running again. ”


Following the weekend, Hidalgo said all county parks will reopen with limited access to amenities. Contact points, such as playgrounds, picnic areas, benches and water fountains, will remain temporarily shut down.

To view a complete list of Harris County parks, click here.
By Hannah Zedaker
Born and raised in Cypress, Texas, Hannah Zedaker graduated from Sam Houston State University in 2016 with a bachelor's degree in mass communication and a minor in political science. She began as an intern with Community Impact Newspaper in 2015 and was hired upon graduation as a reporter for The Woodlands edition in May 2016. In January 2019, she was promoted to serve as the editor of the Spring/Klein edition where she covers Spring ISD and Harris County Commissioners Court, in addition to business, development and transportation news.


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