Tourism Industry Resources
The Abilene Convention and Visitors Bureau is committed to growing Abilene's travel economy; however, the health and well-being of our community, visitors, and team are a priority.
On October 7, Governor Abbott issued Executive Order GA-32, to open bars and similar establishments at up to 50% capacity in conjunction with county officials. In hospital regions with low COVID-19 hospitalizations, County Judges will be able to opt their county into opening bars beginning October 14th, provided they assist in enforcing health protocols. The Governor's Executive Order also increases the occupancy levels for business establishments other than bars to 75%.
Effective October 14:
The following may operate up to 50% capacity in conjunction with county officials:
Effective September 17:
The following may operate up to 75% capacity, effective September 21, 2020:
- Gyms / Exercise Facilities
- Museums and Libraries
- Office-Based Employers
Effective July 2:
- Governor Greg Abbott today issued an Executive Order requiring all Texans to wear a face covering over the nose and mouth in public spaces in counties with 20 or more positive COVID-19 cases, with few exceptions. The Governor also issued a proclamation giving mayors and county judges the ability to impose restrictions on some outdoor gatherings of over 10 people, and making it mandatory that, with certain exceptions, people cannot be in groups larger than ten and must maintain six feet of social distancing from others.
- View the Governor's Executive Order and Proclamation.
Effective June 26:
- All bars and similar establishments that receive more than 51% of their gross receipts from the sale of alcoholic beverages are required to close at 12:00 PM today, June 26, 2020. These businesses may remain open for delivery and take-out, including for alcoholic beverages, as authorized by the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission.
- Restaurants may remain open for dine-in service, but at a capacity not to exceed 50% of total listed indoor occupancy, beginning Monday, June 29, 2020.
- Rafting and tubing businesses must close.
- Outdoor gatherings of 100 or more people must be approved by local governments, with certain exceptions.
Effective June 19:
- Amusement parks and carnivals in counties with more than 1,000 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 may open at 50% capacity.
Effective June 3:
- All businesses currently operating at 25% capacity can expand their occupancy to 50% with certain exceptions.
- Bars and similar establishments may increase their capacity to 50% as long as patrons are seated.
- Amusement parks and carnivals in counties with less than 1,000 confirmed positive cases may open at 50% capacity.
- Restaurants may expand their maximum table size from 6 to 10 persons.
- Outdoor meeting and event space: no occupancy limit for outdoor meetings and events, provided six-feet distancing is maintained.
- Indoor meeting and event space: 50% occupancy limit provided six-feet distancing is maintained between parties.
- Swimming pools (indoor or outdoor): 50 percent occupancy limit.
- Waterparks: 50 percent occupancy limit.
Special provisions have been made for outdoor gatherings, but it is imperative that local officials and public health officials collaborate on safe standards. These provisions are included in the Governor's Executive Order and are also available on the Open Texas webpage.
All businesses should continue to follow the minimum standard health protocols from DSHS. For details and a full list of guidelines, openings, and relevant dates, click here.
Below are resources and COVID-19 toolkits for our partners to promote the health and safety of all travelers. We will continue to monitor the situation and current guidelines from state, city, and county health officials, as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Employee Safety Protocols
In accordance with Governor Abbott's Strike Force to Open Texas, the following are the minimum recommended health protocols for Texas as outlined in the report.
- Printable signs for businesses to post: Best Health Practices to Avoid COVID-19 & How to Wash Your Hands
- All Employers and Event Organizers
- Protocols for Individuals
- Special Guidance for Texas Over 65
Amusement Parks/Bowling Alleys/Video Game Facilities
- Amusement Park Operators
- Amusement Park Visitors
- Bowling Alleys, Bingo Halls, Simulcasting, Skating Rinks
- Bowling, Bingo, Simulcasting, Skating Customers
- Video Game Facilities
Bars & Bar Patrons
Fine Arts Performance Halls
- Golf courses may operate. Golf course operators should require physical distancing and provide sanitation stations for golfers.
Hotels & Lodging
- General hotel operations for accommodating overnight guests: As with prior executive orders, GA-32 allows hotels to accommodate overnight guests at full capacity. Hotel operations for overnight accommodations are considered essential operations under the Department of Homeland Security’s “Guidance on Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers.”
- Hotel restaurants and dining areas: Effective October 14th, indoor areas in restaurants can operate at up to 75 percent% (except in these areas of Texas). THLA interprets this restaurant provision as applying to hotel restaurants, dining areas such as a hotel’s breakfast area, and other spaces where food-service occurs. Hotels providing dining service should follow the State operational checklists found here. Outdoor areas of restaurants can open at 100 percent occupancy.
- Indoor areas of hotel bars and other alcoholic beverage service outlets in hotels can operate at up to 75% maximum capacity. Most hotels that sell alcohol hold TABC alcoholic beverage permits that indicate the hotel establishment does not derive more than 50% of its revenue from the sale of alcoholic beverages. Provided the hotel’s TABC alcoholic beverage permit indicates the establishment does not derive more than 50% of its revenue from the sale of alcoholic beverages, hotel bars may continue to operate and hotels may continue alcoholic beverage service operations, with strict physical distancing and occupancy limitations in effect. Additionally, these hotel bars should have at least some food service available to patrons during the hours the hotel bar is open.
- Hotels should take great care and consider bar service only for guests seated at a table in a dining area (at no more than 75% occupancy). Do not allow guests to gather in groups at the bar, and ensure physical distancing is strictly enforced.
- If you are unsure what type of TABC permit your hotel holds, THLA can assist you. Please call us at 512-474-2996 or email us at email@example.com.
- Outdoor areas of hotel bars and other outdoor alcoholic beverage service outlets in hotels can operate at up to 100% capacity. Most hotels that sell alcohol hold TABC alcoholic beverage permits that indicate the hotel establishment does not derive more than 50% of its revenue from the sale of alcoholic beverages. Provided the hotel’s TABC alcoholic beverage permit indicates the establishment does not derive more than 50% of its revenue from the sale of alcoholic beverages, hotel bars may continue to operate at 100% occupancy outdoors with strict physical distancing and mask requirements in effect. Additionally, these hotel bars should have at least some food service available to patrons during the hours the hotel bar is open.
- Hotels should take great care and consider outdoor bar service only for guests seated at a table in a dining area. Do not allow guests to gather in groups at the bar and ensure physical distancing and mask provisions are strictly enforced where social distancing is not feasible (e.g.; entry and exit of the bar).
- Bars that derive more than 50% of their revenue from the sale of alcoholic beverages (note these types of bars are unusual in hotels): Indoor areas in bars that derive more than half of their revenue from the sale of alcoholic beverages can open at up to 50% maximum capacity if the county judge files a form with TABC permitting such action in that county. Outdoor areas in bars that derive more than half of their revenue from the sale of alcoholic beverages can open at up at 100% maximum capacity if the county judge files a form with TABC permitting such action in that county.
- Pools and other water features: Pools and other water features can operate at up to 75% maximum occupancy and subject to physical distancing requirements and mask requirements where physical distancing is not feasible.
- Meetings and events: Indoor meetings and other indoor gatherings may occur at 75% occupancy capacity, and subject to the physical distancing requirements found in these standards of operation issued by the State of Texas.
- Gyms and hotel fitness rooms: Gyms and fitness rooms can open at 75% capacity. Hotels should follow the State operational checklists found here.
- Massage establishments, personal care services, and beauty services: Massage establishments, personal care services, and beauty services can operate, provided the facility maintains at least six feet of distancing between operating work stations. Hotels providing massage services should follow the State operational checklists found here.
- Retail outlets: Retail outlets within hotels such as stores, markets, and gift shops are covered by the 75% capacity restriction. Hotels with retail outlets should follow the State operational checklists found here.
- Valet parking services: Valet parking services may operate. Valet parking services should follow the State operational checklists found here.
Massage & Personal Care Facilities
- Massage and Personal-Care, Beauty Services
- Massage and Personal-Care, Beauty Service Customers
- Nail Salons
- Nail Salon Customers
Museums and Libraries
Outdoor Sports/Activities, Youth Camps/Clubs & Professional Sports
- Adult Recreational Sports Operators
- Adult Recreation Sport Participants
- Day Youth Camp Operators
- Day Youth Camp Families
- Outdoor Events
- Outdoor Motorsports
- Outdoor Sport Participants
- Overnight Youth Camp Operators
- Overnight Youth Camp Families
- Professional Sports Leagues
- Rodeo / Equestrian Events
- Youth Clubs
- Youth Club Participants
- Youth Sports Operators
- Youth Sports Families
- Zoos, Aquariums, Natural Caverns
- Zoo, Aquarium, Natural Cavern Visitors