Crowds of up to 500,000 expected on Galveston Island for Labor Day


In the dog days of this strange pandemic summer, a refreshing beach retreat to Galveston might be the perfect escape.

But here’s the one catch–you might be enjoying that with about 500,000 others on Galveston Island.

“Galveston is open for business and looking forward to a great Labor Day weekend,” The City of Galveston posted on Facebook.  “We ask residents and visitors to please be mindful of COVID-19 and practice safe social distancing while enjoying the island.”

After tense moments with Laura storm prep and several beach closures, Galveston beaches are open and now expecting to see about 250,000 to 500,000 visitors over Labor Day, according to Galveston Island Convention & Visitors Bureau (GICVB).

“We are seeing the summer extending because a lot of kids aren’t going back to school quite so early or they’re schooling from home,” Michael Woody, GICVB chief tourism officer told KHOU.

Here are a few things you need to know before you go:

  •  Parking is restricted at Diamond Beach (western point of Seawall) and Fort San Jacinto (eastern point of Seawall.)
  •  Beginning Friday morning and continuing through the weekend, parking will be blocked on the north side of Seawall Boulevard (the landward side) between 25th Street and 37th Street.
  • We’re under a statewide mask mandate requiring all people over the age of 10 to wear a mask when in public and unable to social distance. There are exceptions, such as when a person is consuming food or drink or when a person is exercising. (Not required at beach)

For those expressing concerns about COVID-19 and the crowds, Galveston’s Mayor Craig Brown reassured visitors about the coronavirus infection rates dropping on the Island.

“The infection rates in Galveston County and in Galveston (are) doing extremely well, and we feel very comfortable to invite anyone who wants to come down,” Brown said.


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