UPDATED: The Woodlands Township area loses March science conference, May fun run to coronavirus concerns

The Woodlands Township officials said they will keep residents informed of public health alerts related to the coronavirus. (Vanessa Holt/Community Impact Newspaper)
The Woodlands Township officials said they will keep residents informed of public health alerts related to the coronavirus. (Vanessa Holt/Community Impact Newspaper)

The Woodlands Township officials said they will keep residents informed of public health alerts related to the coronavirus. (Vanessa Holt/Community Impact Newspaper)

Updated 6:44 p.m. March 12

Editor's note: The headline of the story has been updated because The Woodlands Rodeo Express shuttle was canceled due to the cancellation of the Houston Livestock and Rodeo Show. Additional event cancellations will be posted for The Woodlands area as they become available.

Updated 4:38 p.m. March 10

Texas Children's Hospital and the Houston Marathon Foundation announced in a March 10 press release they are canceling two upcoming fun runs, including the May 2 event at Texas Children's Hospital The Woodlands, due to coronavirus concerns.

"Due to increasing concerns, and our focus on providing safe, high-quality care to our patients, we made the decision to cancel the upcoming Texas Children’s Family Fun Runs on Saturday, April 4 at Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus and Saturday, May 2 at Texas Children’s Hospital The Woodlands," according to the Texas Children's Hospital statement.

Participants will be refunded the $8 entry fee if they registered in advance, according to the news release.

4:34 p.m. March 9

The Woodlands Township officials said in a weekend news release they are working closely with public health services as the Greater Houston area responds to the potential spread of the coronavirus, but as of March 9 no major closures or cancellations were announced due to health and safety concerns. The township plans to continue operating its shuttle service to The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo on weekends in March, according to a news release.

However, the annual Lunar and Planetary Science Conference was canceled by the event organizers, according to Nick Wolda, president of Visit the Woodlands, the township’s convention and visitors bureau. The event had been scheduled for March 16-20 at The Woodlands Waterway Marriott Hotel and Convention Center.

Although no other upcoming conferences had been announced as canceled as of 5 p.m. March 9, the organizers of the Memorial Hermann North American Ironman Texas, scheduled for April 25 in The Woodlands, posted a notice on the event website that they would monitor health concerns as the date approaches.

“We are monitoring the situation with public health officials to follow and implement measures dictated by health agencies and governments,” according to a statement on the Ironman website. “We will continue to take appropriate actions on an event-by-event basis, following the decisions made by these respective authorities and agencies.”

The Woodlands Township stated in a release it would continue to follow the lead of Montgomery and Harris counties' public health organizations in determining protocols for public spaces as well as messaging to the community.
By Vanessa Holt
A resident of the Houston area since 2011, Vanessa began working in community journalism in her home state of New Jersey in 1996. She joined Community Impact Newspaper in 2016 as a reporter for the Spring/Klein edition and became editor of that paper in March 2017 and editor of The Woodlands edition in January 2019.


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