City of Houston to restart ‘limited special events’

Mayor Sylvester Turner announced today that the City of Houston would allow a limited number of special events beginning this week as long as they are held in a controlled environment and organizers follow strict COVID-19 health and safety protocols.

The Houston Health Department and the Mayor’s Office of Special Events will carefully review all event requests. Parades, fun runs, walks, biking events, and festivals are on hold through the remainder of the year.

“As the pandemic has changed our lives, it has changed how we gather,” Mayor Turner said. “However, we know that there are opportunities to stage social events if they follow current health and safety guidelines and requirements.

 Approved limited events will:

  • Start with a small audience, allowing up to 25% of a controlled venue’s normal occupancy.
  • Ensure that everyone wears masks, practices social distancing, has their temperature checked, and answers the COVID-19 questionnaire upon entry.
  • The City will work with producers on health and safety protocols for live special events with audiences.

The first three approved events include:

  • On Thursday, the Houston Texans will hold a “Drive-In Tail Gate Party” in their parking lot – 100 cars with four people maximum per car, for potentially 400 people.
  • The Houston Symphony will stage a concert series in Jones Hall for the Performing Arts. The Symphony will only allow a maximum of 150 guests to attend the performance in a 3,000-seat venue.
  • The Houston Dynamo and Dash will host their game series for the first time this year with less than 25% capacity of BBVA Stadium.

To achieve success, we must all work together,” said Mayor Turner, who was joined at the news conference by Local Health Authority Dr. David Persse, Susan Christian, director of the Mayor’s Office of Special Events and John Mangum, Executive Director and CEO of the Houston Symphony.

“I firmly believe that if we all do our part, we can be successful. Promoters need to do their part along with the attending public. As we have these events with the safeguards in place, we should be able to keep holding them as long as everyone follows the safety guidelines,” Dr. David Persse said.