COVID-19 Case Prompts Temporary Closure At Big Bend Ranch State Park

Big Bend Ranch State Park announced Friday that it will close for a week after a park employee tested positive for COVID-19.

In a statement posted on social media, the park said, “due to extensive staff exposure, at this time, out of an abundance of caution, the park will close and tentatively reopen for overnight and day use reservations on Saturday, November 7th, 2020.”

The state park said it tentatively plans to reopen on Nov. 7. (Ari Snider / Marfa Public Radio)

Park officials said it will contact guests with reservations through Nov. 6 to offer refunds or rescheduling. The park will remain closed for day-use as well during this time.

According to a Texas Parks and Wildlife Department spokesperson, the employee in question is symptomatic. The employee had been in contact with other park employees who have been notified and are quarantining, according to the spokesperson.

Additionally, the TPWD spokesperson said the employee has “limited interaction with the public due to the nature of their role,” so it is not suspected that any members of the public were exposed.

No other employees are showing symptoms as of Friday, Oct. 30.

This is not the first time that Big Bend parks have faced COVID-19 related closures. Over the summer, an employee at Big Bend National Park tested positive for the virus, forcing the park to delay its reopening plans. The employee eventually recovered and the park reopened.

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to include information from Texas Parks and Wildlife.

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