AUSTIN, Texas — As of May 1, museums are allowed to reopen in Texas – with a 25% occupancy – after Gov. Abbott issued an executive order in April to gradually reopen the Lone Star State.
During an April 27 press conference, the governor announced the stay-at-home executive order would expire on April 30 and would not be renewed. Gov. Abbott also announced the opening of several types of businesses that would be able to re-open on May 1, including museums.
Museums and libraries would be able to reopen, given they follow the 25% occupancy rules and do not reopen interactive features, Abbott said.
Gov. Abbott said the next step is to safely open up as many businesses as possible. He said it is not possible to reopen everything all at once in order to prevent a second, stronger wave of the virus.
"This strategic approach to opening the state of Texas prioritizes the health and safety of our communities and follows the guidelines laid out by our team of medical experts," said Gov. Abbott. "Now more than ever, Texans must remain committed to safe distancing practices that reduce the spread of COVID-19, and we must continue to rely on doctors and data to provide us with the safest strategies to restore Texans' livelihoods. We must also focus on protecting the most vulnerable Texans from exposure to COVID-19. If we remain focused on protecting the lives of our fellow Texans, we can continue to open the Lone Star State."
Here is a list of which museums are open and which ones are closed:
Editor's note: This list will update as museums gradually reopen.
- Austin History Center: closed.
More information here: https://library.austintexas.gov/ahc/about-us
- Austin Nature & Science Center: Scheduled to reopen May 29.
More information here: https://austintexas.gov/department/austin-nature-science-center
- Blanton Museum of Art: closed.
"Blanton Museum of Art is temporarily closed and will reopen as soon as the situation allows." More information here: https://blantonmuseum.org/welcome-to-the-blanton-museum-of-art/
- Bullock Museum: closed.
"The Bullock Museum remains closed as staff plan carefully for a future reopening so that you can feel confident we are providing a safe, welcoming, and enjoyable experience." More information here: https://www.thestoryoftexas.com/
- Carver Museum: closed.
"To maintain the health and safety of City of Austin employees and the public,this City of Austin Facility is closed. For more information, please visit austintexas.gov/COVID19. If you have any questions please call Austin 3-1-1." More information here: https://austintexas.gov/department/george-washington-carver-museum-cultural-and-genealogy-center
- Elisabet Ney Museum: closed.
More information here: http://www.austintexas.gov/department/elisabet-ney-museum
- French Legation Historic Site: closed.
"The site is currently closed for renovations. Help stop the spread of COVID-19: thc.texas.gov/publichealth" More information here: https://www.thc.texas.gov/historic-sites/french-legation-state-historic-site
- George H.W. Bush Library: closed.
"Due to the coronavirus public health emergency, the George Bush Presidential Library & Museum will be closed to the public until further notice. We will continue to respond to written requests at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please check our website or archives.gov/coronavirus for updates on our operating hours and status." More information here: https://www.bush41.org/
- Governor's mansion: closed.
"To support the health and safety of our community and the First Family, all tours of the Texas Governor's Mansion have been temporarily suspended. We will not be taking any new reservations for the immediate future. As we monitor the situation regarding COVID-19, we will share any updates to our offerings as they arise. Please refer to the State Preservation Board website for additional information." More information here: https://tspb.texas.gov/prop/tgm/tgm-tour/tgm-tour.html
- Harry Ransom Center: closed.
"The University of Texas at Austin and the Harry Ransom Center continue to prioritize the health and safety of our community, and we remain temporarily closed to the public at this time. Re-opening will be announced in accordance with the university and with proper safety measures in place to protect our valued community.The temporary closure includes exhibition galleries, classrooms, and the Reading and Viewing Room. Also during this time, all events and tours are canceled." More information here: https://www.hrc.utexas.edu/
- The Heritage Museum of the Texas Hill Country: Projected to re-open, at least partially, by June 1, which is subject to change.
More information here: https://theheritagemuseum.com/
- Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center: Scheduled to reopen June 1.
"To protect the wellness of our staff, volunteers and guests and comply with updated City of Austin health regulations, the Wildflower Center will be closed to the public until June 1. We will reopen at that time if the situation allows." More information here: https://www.wildflower.org/
- LBJ National History Park: closed.
More information here:
- LBJ Presidential Library: closed. "On Monday, April 27, 2020, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announced the state's first phase to safely and strategically open Texas would begin Friday, May 1. While phase one allows museums to open at 25 percent capacity, the LBJ Presidential Library will not be re-opening on Friday, May 1."
More information here. http://www.lbjlibrary.org/
- Mexic-Arte: closed.
More information here: http://www.mexic-artemuseum.org/mexicarte/
- Museum of the Weird: closed.
More information here: https://www.museumoftheweird.com/
- National Museum of the Pacific War: closed. Will update on social media pages as developments occur.
"More information here: https://www.pacificwarmuseum.org/
- Texas Capitol: closed.
"In an ongoing effort to reduce exposure to the COVID-19 contagion the State Preservation Board will fully close public access to the Texas State Capitol effective 8:00AM, Wednesday, March 18, 2020.The agency will continue to monitor public health officials' protocols for containing community transmission of the COVID-19 virus and respond accordingly. SPB will notify the public as soon as the Capitol is scheduled to reopen."
More information here: https://tspb.texas.gov/prop/tcvc/cvc/cvc.html
- Texas Music Museum: closed.
More information here: https://www.texasmusicmuseum.org/
- Texas Ranger Hall of Fame and Museum: Scheduled to reopen May 4. More information here: https://www.texasranger.org/
- Texas Toy Museum: open. Hours of operation here: https://www.austintexas.org/listings/texas-toy-museum/8205/
- The Contemporary Austin: closed.
"We believe experiences with works of art are vital to the well-being of our community, and we are eager to welcome visitors back to The Contemporary Austin – Jones Center and The Contemporary Austin – Laguna Gloria. At the same time, we aim to do all we can to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. To that end, both of our locations will remain closed at this time. The Contemporary Austin staff has spent the past few weeks building site-specific safety and sanitation plans for both of the museum’s locations, so we will be ready when and if it seems safe to reopen incrementally." More information here: https://thecontemporaryaustin.org/
- Thinkery: Scheduled to reopen May 15.
More information here: https://thinkeryaustin.org/
- UMLAUF: closed.
"In the ongoing measures to combat the spread of COVID-19, the UMLAUF Sculpture Garden and Museum will remain closed until further notice.Our greatest priority is the health and safety of all, and we look forward to reopening the UMLAUF Sculpture Garden and Museum at such a time deemed safe by the proper authorities. Please follow us on social media and check our website for updates." More information here: https://www.umlaufsculpture.org/
- Zilker Botanical Garden: closed.
More information here. https://zilkergarden.org/
If you notice any of these museums open or don't see one on this list, contact KVUE at email@example.com. Send this story link in the email for reference.
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