Day Trips & Beyond: June Travel Updates

Safe daytripping as coronavirus continues

Finding ways to do a little daytripping isn’t hard as long as you maintain a social distance, wear a mask, wash your hands often, and light a candle for continued good health.

Before modern medicine came to South Texas there was Don Pedrito Jaramillo, a curandero who dispensed natural cures. His resting place outside of Falfurrias continues to be a shrine for those wishing to light a candle to petition his blessings. It’s one of the sites spotlighted in Texas Time Travel. (Photo by Gerald E. McLeod)

Summertime road trip adventures lay ahead and the Texas Historical Commission is there to help you find your way. The THC’s Texas Time Travel website guides history buffs and daytrippers to a wide range of popular historic destinations and hidden treasures. For instance, you could visit a historic soft drink bottling plant in Dublin or a curandero’s shrine in Falfurrias. Keep in mind that during the coronavirus pandemic many heritage sites are closed or have limited hours, so it is best to call ahead before visiting.

The City of San Marcos has closed its river parks until further notice. Parks affected by the closure are Rio Vista Park, City Park, San Marcos Plaza Park, Juan Veramendi Park, Bicentennial Park, Children’s Park, Crook Park, Dog Beach, Cape’s Dam, Thompson’s Island, Stokes Park, Ramon Lucio Park, and Wildlife Annex/Wilderness Park. The Lions Club Tube Rental will remain closed until the riverside parks are reopened. The dog park, the skate park, and natural areas remain open, but visitors should observe CDC recommendations on social distancing and wear face masks if they are unable to keep six feet of distance between them and people outside their household. Due to the increase in COVID-19 cases, Hays County is under a face-covering order at least until July 20.

Five days after Schlitterbahn Waterpark in New Braunfels reopened for the summer to season pass holders, Community Impact reported that “multiple employees at Schlitterbahn have tested positive for COVID-19 and were sent home to self-quarantine. The water park is still open and affected areas will be cleaned and sanitized.” There was no word of the exposure to the coronavirus on the company’s website. This happened at a time that New Braunfels and Comal County are seeing a surge in cases. According to the Texas Department of State Health Services, Comal County has been relatively unaffected by the pandemic. It didn’t hit 100 cases until June 2. In the 20 days following, the county saw 180 new cases, just as river recreation began ramping up.

The story of the Black experience during the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s through the early 1980s unfolds in the art exhibition "Soul of a Nation: Art in the Age of Black Power" at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston through August 30. Organized by the Tate Modern in London, the Houston engagement will be the final stop on a three-year tour. Among the artists featured are Romare Bearden, Elizabeth Catlett, and Roy DeCarava. A special section of the exhibit features works from the museum’s collection spotlighting art made in Houston and Texas featuring John Biggers, Kermit Oliver, and others. During the exhibit the museum will require face coverings, temperature checks at the door, and social distancing. Advance timed tickets are recommended and will be sold by credit card only.


Gerald McLeod has been traveling around Texas and beyond for his "Day Trips" column for more than 25 years. Keep up to date with his journeys on his archive page.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

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KEYWORDS FOR THIS POST

Day Trips, COVID-19, coronavirus, Schlitterbahn, San Marcos, Soul of a Nation, Texas Historical Commission, Museum of Fine Arts Houston

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