Dallas

Students, Families Kick Off Spring Break in Mandate-Free Texas

Doctors worry large, unmasked gatherings could become super spreader events leading to a surge in coronavirus cases.

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As families gathered for sunshine and celebration, medical professionals worry about a possible spring break COVID-19 surge.

Over 5,000 people visited the Dallas Arboretum Monday, and while Texas may be open 100%, capacity remains at 50% at the arboretum.  

Nearly as plentiful as the flowers were the masks.

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“Wearing them is like second nature. I feel very uncomfortable without it,” said Carla Giudice, who visited the arboretum. 

She snapped photos of her 2-year-old daughter Sofia enjoying the floral festival, Dallas Blooms.  

“It’s a beautiful day, and we’re very fortunate that we got to come out with friends,” Giudice said.

Officials estimate around 275,000 people will flock to the Arboretum during Dallas Blooms and said keeping crowds at 50% will help maintain social distancing. 

There were plenty of children’s activities, like the petting zoo and face-painting.   

Renee Turman came out with her son Adrian to enjoy the fun.  

“It’s spring break for his preschool and we came with some friends,” Turman said.

Dallas County Health and Human Services Director Dr. Philip Huang said he was concerned big gatherings without masks could lead to a spring break surge in COVID-19 cases.  

“I want to get over this and get back to normal, but it’s not time yet," he said. "But there is some light at the end of the tunnel, some guidance on what people can do once they receive the vaccine, and that is opening up some things, so that’s encouraging."

He recommended keeping spring break gatherings small and outdoors if possible. 

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