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. Governor Greg Abbott announced the second phase of the State of Texas' ongoing plan to safely and strategically open Texas while minimizing the spread of COVID-19.
Under Phase II, restaurants may increase their occupancy to 50% and additional services and activities that remained closed under Phase I may open with restricted occupancy levels and minimum standard health protocols laid out by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS).
Via Executive Order GA-23, the following services and activities may open under Phase II:
- Child Care Centers (May 18)
- Massage and Personal-Care Centers (May 18)
- Youth Clubs (May 18)
- Rodeo and Equestrian Events (May 22)
- Bowling Alleys, Bingo Halls, Simulcast Racing, and Skating Rinks (May 22)
- Bars (May 22)
- Aquariums and Natural Caverns (May 22)
- Zoos (May 29)
- Day Youth Camps (May 31)
- Overnight Youth Camps (May 31)
- Youth Sports (May 31)
- Professional Sports Leagues (May 31)
All sporting and camp activities are required to adhere by special safety standards, and minimum standard health protocols have been established for all newly-announced opened services and activities. Restaurants may expand their occupancy to 50% beginning May 22. Bars—including wine tasting rooms, craft breweries, and similar businesses—may open at 25% occupancy but like restaurants, these occupancy limits do not apply to outdoor areas that maintain safe distancing among parties.
Governor Greg Abbott issued a proclamation on May 26th expanding additional services and activities that can open under Phase II of the state's plan to safely and strategically open. With this proclamation, water parks, recreational sport programs for adults, driver education programs, and food-court dining areas within shopping malls can begin operations with limited occupancy or regulations to protect the health and safety of Texans.
Beginning Friday, May 29th, water parks can open but must limit their occupancy to 25% of normal operating limits. Components of these water parks that have video arcades must remain closed. Starting Sunday, May 31st, recreational sports programs for adults can resume, but games and similar competitions may not begin until June 15th. Food-court dining areas within shopping malls can also immediately resume operations, but malls are encouraged to designate one or more individuals who are responsible for ensuring health and safety practices are followed, including: limiting tables to six individuals; maintaining a six-feet distance between individuals sitting at different tables; cleaning and disinfecting tables between uses; and ensuring no condiments or other items are left on tables between customer uses.
Minimum standard health protocols outlined by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) are recommended and located on the Open Texas webpage.
Opened services and activities under Phase II are subject to certain occupancy limits and health and safety protocols. For details and a full list of guidelines, openings, and relevant dates, visit www.gov.texas.gov/opentexas.
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.
- Protocols for Individuals
- Protocols for all Employers and Employees
- Special Guidance for Texas Over 65
Hotels & Lodging
- Take Action: Know your coronavirus facts
- Resuming Operations
- Clean Thoroughly and Routinely: Cleaning, Disinfection and Hygiene
- Download the the "Safe Stay" initiative protocols released by the American Hotel & Lodging Association
- On May 5th, Governor Abbott released Executive Order No. GA-21 regarding hotel pools:
- Swimming pools (including swimming pools in lodging properties), can open at up to 25 percent capacity. If the pool is outdoors without a specific maximum capacity rating, the pool may operate at up to 25 percent of normal operating limits, as determined by the pool operator.
- This list will help strike the right messaging note with returning guests
- Read the Texas Hotel and Lodging Association's guide on the Governor's order here, which includes information about what services and and should reopen
Museums and Libraries
Outdoor Sports/Activities, Youth Camps & Professional Sports
New, In Effect May 22 & 29, 2020:
- Rodeo / Equestrian Events
- Zoos, Aquariums, Natural Caverns
- Zoo, Aquarium, Natural Cavern Visitors
- Outdoor Motorsports
New, In Effect May 31, 2020:
- Adult Recreational Sports Operators
- Adult Recreation Sport Participants
- Day Youth Camp Operators
- Day Youth Camp Families
- Overnight Youth Camp Operators
- Overnight Youth Camp Families
- Professional Sports Leagues
- Youth Sports Operators
- Youth Sports Families
Parks/Beaches/Bodies of Water
New, In Effect May 29, 2020:
- Protocols for Wedding Reception Venues
- Protocols for Wedding Reception Attendees
- Protocols for Wedding Venues
- Protocols for Wedding Attendees