A petition has been started to cancel the rest of the Houston Rodeo because of the coronavirus after Austin canceled SXSW. However, officials so far are showing no indication that the Houston Livestock and Rodeo show will end early.
Despite a Petition, the Rodeo Show Has No Indications of Ending Early
Despite a petition that’s gained thousands of signatures so far, the Houston Livestock and Rodeo show organizers are not indicating any interest in closing the show early, Click2Houston reported. The show was attended by 2.6 million in 2017, Click2Houston reported.
The petition now has more than 4,500 signatures. It reads:
If the risk of covid19 virus is bad enough to cancel SXSW, then it’s bad enough to cancel all other major events, including the Houston Rodeo. It would be irresponsible to continue putting lives at risk for the remainder of this event.”
The Houston Rodeo Show started March 3 and runs through March 22, 2020.
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner addressed the question on Twitter, writing: “Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo #HLSR is primarily a local event. SXSW attracts people from over 100 countries. CERAWEEK which Houston has hosted for 35 years attracts delegates from over 80 countries. Austin canceled SXSW; Houston canceled CERAWEEK.”
In a statement Thursday, Rodeo Show officials said: “While people need to remain vigilant, there is currently no need for the average person to take out-of-the-ordinary protective actions.”
The Rodeo did share measures it was taking to help, including doubling hand sanitizer stations and increasing hand sanitizer stock. Some Texas residents have noted that it’s difficult to get hand sanitizer at many grocery stores and prices on Amazon have increased significantly recently.
Other measures the rodeo listed included increasing sanitizing touchpoints, signage at restrooms, and restocking soap and paper towels in bathrooms. You can see the Rodeo’s full “Health Tips” page here.
Coronavirus Cases in Houston
The Houston region has at least eight positive cases. Officials said they don’t think it’s spread to the community at large, Click2Houston reported.
One of the Harris County positive cases causing the most concern is a person who attended Ash Wednesday Mass and had communion at St. Cecilia Catholic Church, Click 2 Houston reported. The person did not participate in the “common cup” communion.
There are three presumptive positive cases who traveled overseas: one is a woman from Houston and two are from Fort Bend. All three are women in their 60s who were exposed while in Egypt, Chron.com reported. The Houston woman is hospitalized and stable, and the Fort Bend women are self-quarantining at home. There were 17 people on the trip and the others’ conditions aren’t known.
The five other cases include a Fort Bend man in his 70s and four Harris County people in their 60s or 70s, Chron.com reported. One case is a staff member at Rice University who had visited the campus.
Meanwhile, 11 health care workers at Memorial Hermann are self-quarantining after having contact with a COVID-19 patient, ABC 13 reported. Three are showing symptoms.
The Houston Astros are now pre-signing items and distributing them rather than shaking hands and signing fans’ items, Click2Houston reported.
In San Antonio just a few hours away from Houston, one quarantined evacuated patient was released in error and was in the public for 12 hours before going back into quarantine. While she was released, she visited the Holiday Inn Express Airport and also visited the North Star Mall. She went to Dillard’s, Talbot’s Swarovski, and ate at the food court while she was there, CNBC reported. San Antonio declared a public health emergency after this was discovered.