Kristi Collier, center, is seen with a group of Winter Texans in this photo that hangs in her McAllen offices of Welcome Home Rio Grande Valley. (Courtesy Photo)

A shelter-in-place order on Monday (Sept. 14) was lifted for adults in Hidalgo County, but the county judge told BorderReport.com that measures are still in place to protect vulnerable populations, like the elderly, from COVID-19, and to safely accommodate and welcome back retired Winter Texans who soon are expected to return to South Texas, and who come not only for the sun but for fun.

Hidalgo County Judge Richard Cortez lifted for adults countywide shelter-in-place orders that he had put into effect March 25 to prevent the spread of coronavirus. However, children ages 17 and younger still must remain at home unless “accompanied by a parent or guardian when participating in essential activities,” which include seeking medical care. He left in place an overnight curfew for everyone.

But his new orders also elaborate on indoor and outdoor gathering rules and coincide with the estimated arrival of thousands of Winter Texans who are known to amass in large groups and like to attend lively, nightly gatherings while they are here.

“I just wanted to pay particular attention to Winter Texans because they’re traditionally coming in at this point in time and they are the most vulnerable population due to their age. We know many of them come here and need a lot of medical care and so we want to make sure that every RV park takes precautions,” Cortez said Monday. “They like to come and square dance and have fun and have fellowship with people but we need them to do it safely: Have physical distance, sanitize all the areas, try to not go to other nursing homes and parks and try to have no visitors coming from outside.”

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