Storms, pandemic no deterrent

River region reports robust Memorial Day weekend crowds

Julye Keeble

Staff writer

Despite the daily threat of thunderstorms, the river region saw one of the biggest Memorial Day weekends in years, according to Annabell McNew, executive director of the Texas Hill Country River Region.

“Overnight rentals seemed to be completely booked in the area, and people came in droves to enjoy the river. Thousands of people rented tubes and kayaks from local outfitters, and day-use permits at crossings on the Frio and Chalk Bluff Park on the Nueces were especially high on Saturday,” McNew said.

She noted that as the rain came in on Saturday the crowds dispersed a bit, but alongside the welcome Sunday sunshine, the visitors returned to enjoy the river.

Many out-of-area visitors came from larger Texas cities including Corpus Christ, Houston and Dallas, glad to be able to travel and enjoy the Hill Country. A concert Saturday night at House Pasture Cattle Company in Concan drew a crowd of approximately 400 people, and social distancing was being practiced, according to Uvalde County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Kevin Carr.

Carr said deputies monitored crowds over the weekend and overall people had fun and displayed good behavior.

“About half the concert-goers wore masks, and nobody was going bananas,” Carr said, adding that deputies checked on the event multiple times.

He said UCSO made three arrests in Concan over the weekend, and made the scene of a car wreck Saturday at approximately 1 p.m. where two young women were fortunate to receive only scratches and bruising after their car rolled over.

Carr said the women were following another vehicle too closely when it unexpectedly made a u-turn and the driver overcorrected. The car rolled in the 20,000 block of U.S. Highway 127.

Of the arrests, Carr said two involved people staying in cabins and one was of someone in the river area. Early Saturday morning, deputies arrested a 44-year-old man from Corpus Christi for making terroristic threats. Later that morning, a woman, also from Corpus Christi, was arrested for public intoxication.

On Saturday evening around 7:30 p.m., a young man from Seguin was arrested on multiple counts after a fight with his girlfriend escalated.

Carr said this is the fourth week that the river area has been open for visitors, who up until now have mostly been locals from the Uvalde area, though some came from San Antonio for day trips.

McNew said visitors tend to crowd around free public river access points.

“The community is attempting to address some concerns about parking and overcrowding at the crossings, but overall, businesses are glad to be welcoming visitors back to the area, and expect another great upcoming weekend,” she said.



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