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Local concert venues and convention centers considering mask mandate plans

Published: Mar. 3, 2021 at 10:55 PM CST
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) - An end to the statewide mask mandate could mean big business for concert venues and convention centers.

Gov. Greg Abbott issued an executive order effective next Wednesday that ends the mask mandate and eliminates capacity restrictions for most businesses, restaurants and other facilities.

A handful of venues say they’re still trying to process the news before they come up with a game plan on mandates moving forward.

Carla Pendergraft with the Waco Convention Center says it and other convention centers are still waiting for additional guidance from their respective cities before making any decisions on what to do.

“I was honestly very surprised with the decision,” she said.

“I think we’ve had about eight calls almost immediately when the press conference was finished with the governor which was really unexpected.”

Meanwhile in Belton, Bell County Expo Center Executive Director Tim Stephens says they will encourage face masks, but not mandate them.

“If it’s somebody else’s event and it’s not our event, say a school district, it’ll be their decision of what they require for people to come in,” he said.

On social media alone, thousands have commented their thoughts on large events in the future.

Many like Monica Castillo say they’re not willing to risk it even with a mask on.

“When we’re talking concerts, we’re talking about a lot of people in a small or large venue,” she said.

“This all depends on the entertainer and how many people show up. I just don’t see it working.”

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