Some city parks, splash pads and museums – as well as portions of the El Paso Zoo and some library services – are opening to the public after being shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We know that exercise and being outdoors is a key factor in maintaining good mental health during stressful times,” Mayor Dee Margo said in a statement. “We also appreciate the need to feed the mind with new reading material and learn new things about our history, art and wildlife, so it is encouraging to see our quality of life facilities reopening.”
For several weeks, city officials had said parks, recreation centers and other facilities would remain closed due to the spreading COVID-19 pandemic as well as budgetary concerns.
On June 5, the city through a news released announced it planned to “cautiously reopen” services.
Here’s what the city is opening and when, and what will remain closed:
All city parks, skate parks and outdoor basketball and tennis courts reopened on June 8, though playgrounds and fitness equipment will remain closed until further notice, officials said.
Park visitors are asked to follow social distancing protocols, wear face coverings and not gather in groups of more than 10.
City permits are needed for organized functions, such as games and practices.
Hiking and walking trails across the city reopened Memorial Day weekend.
Spray parks will open 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 5-8 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday starting Wednesday, July 1.
The extended breaks will be used for city staff to clean the facilities.
The spray parks are:
Sue Young Park, 9730 Diana
Hidden Valley Spray Park, 200 Coconut Tree
Grandview Spray Park, 3100 Jefferson
Pavo Real Enhanced Spray Park, 9301 Alameda
Westside Community Park, 7400 High Ridge
Marty Robbins Park, 11600 Vista del Sol
Braden Aboud Memorial Park, 4325 River Bend
Salvador Rivas Jr. Park, 12480 Pebble Hills
Some recreation centers will also open July 1. The centers will open from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. and 4-9 p.m. Monday through Thursday; and 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Friday and Saturday, including:
Don Haskins, 7400 High Ridge
Veterans, 5301 Salem
Pat O’Rourke, 901 N. Virginia
Gary del Palacio, 3001 Parkwood
Pavo Real, 9301 Alameda
Marty Robbins, 11620 Vista Del Sol
Officer David Ortiz, 563 N. Carolina
The public will be required to wear face coverings except when participating in sports and aerobic activity.
Some classes will be offered at reduced attendance capacity, officials said.
Pools and senior centers
City pools and senior centers will remain closed to the public until further notice. Officials said the city is working on a plan to phase in the reopening those facilities in the future.
El Paso Zoo
The zoo, 4001 E. Paisano, will open from 8 a.m.-2 p.m. Wednesday to Friday and 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday starting July 1. Visitors will be required to wear face coverings.
The zoo’s train, carousel, tree house/playground and ropes course will remain closed, and there will be no shows or demonstrations inside buildings.
Food services will be available at the capacity allowed by state and local emergency orders.
The zoo will continue offering camps, demonstrations and lectures online.
Information: elpasozoo.org; @elpasozoo on Facebook
Curbside check-out services will be available at three libraries from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on varying days starting Monday, June 29.
Dorris Van Doren, 551 Redd, Wednesdays and Fridays
Esperanza Acosta Moreno, 12480 Pebble Hills, Tuesday and Thursdays
Richard Burges, 9600 Dyer, Mondays and Thursdays
Materials will need to be checked out online and picked up by appointment. Information: elpasolibrary.org.
The El Paso Museum of Art and the El Paso Museum of History will open to the public from 9 a.m.-9 p.m. Thursday and 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Friday and Saturday starting Thursday, July 2.
Attendance will be monitored to ensure that social distancing guidelines are followed and all visitors will be required to wear face coverings, officials said.
The Digital Wall at Museum of History will remain closed until further notice, but is accessible online at digie.org.
Information: epma.art or @elpasomuseumofart on Facebook; historyelpasotexas.gov or @EPMuseumofHistory on Facebook.