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Greg Abbott
(Miguel Gutierrez/POOL via The Texas Tribune)

Austin Mayor Steve Adler, along with the mayors of eight other large Texas cities, sent a letter to Gov. Greg Abbott today asking for the authority to regulate the use of face coverings in their cities, which they are currently not able to do.


"We should trust local officials to make informed choices about health policy," the group wrote. "And if mayors are given the opportunity to require face coverings, we believe our cities will be ready to help reduce the spread of this disease."

Adler shared the letter on Twitter shortly after a virtual press conference, during which Abbott both recommended that Texans wear face coverings to slow the spread of COVID-19 and said he would not allow local governments to require them to do so.

"COVID-19 still exists in Texas, and if we are to contain the spread while getting Texans back to work, all Texans must do their part," Abbott said. "The more Texans protect their own health, the safer our state will be, and the more we will be able to open up for business."



The letter campaign arrives after a documented spike in new confirmed COVID-19 cases and four consecutive days of record-breaking hospitalization rates at the state level. Texas reported 2,622 new cases today, an all-time high.

While Abbott said he is not concerned about the "abundant hospital capacity that exists to treat Texans," local officials are worried that these rates may continue to rise—leading to an overwhelmed health care system.

"Once we enter this trajectory, it's very difficult to get out," Austin-Travis County Interim Health Authority Dr. Mark Escott said last week.

Popular

Tito's releases (not so?) ugly sweater line for the holidays, profits to charity

Tito's Handmade Vodka

Show your love for Tito's and for the community this year with a wide selection of not that ugly, uglyish, ugly, uglier, and ugliest holiday sweaters.

There's lots choose from, and plenty of accessories like scarves and socks, plus gear for your dog, too.

All of the items can be purchased online or at the Love, Tito’s Retail Store in Austin, TX. 100% of all net proceeds from online or in-store purchases go to one of the nonprofits we’ve teamed up with.

Click here to see the entire collection in the Tito's store.

Mac and Cheese Fest and Free Art Exhibit
Waterloo Greenway, Good Vibrations Installation


🗓 All weekend

🎨 Creek Show Art Exhibit

Check out this highly anticipated art exhibition with illuminated art along Waller Creek. Tickets are free and the event includes food vendors, dazzling lights, live music, and hands-on activities

All weekend 6 p.m - 10 p.m | 📍Waterloo Park

✨ Mozart's Light Show

This iconic holiday tradition lights up for the first time this holiday season starting this weekend! Reserve your spot for an enchanting light and sound performance, delicious hot cocoa, sweet treats, and some overall fun with your friends or family. The show runs till January 6th.

6 p.m and 9 p.m | 📍Mozart's Coffee Roasters - 3825 Lake Austin Blvd, Austin, TX 78703

🗓 Saturday

🥊 Kickboxing in the Park

This fitness event is free and open to the public. Get your morning started right with a "Fitness in the park" class for kickboxing! The class will be led by certified instructors and is a great way to get a cardio workout in while also honing your self-defense skills.

10 a.m - 11 a.m | 📍 Metz Park

🛍 The Front Market

Support local LBGTQ+ and female artists at this outdoor market with over 150 vendors. Get your holiday shopping out of the way at this event, with vendors for food trucks, handmade goods, raffles, hands on workshops and activities, and more.

11 a.m - 5 p.m | 📍Ani's Day and Night - 7107 E Riverside Drive, Austin, TX 78741

🗓 Sunday

🧀 Mac and Cheese Fest

Did someone say cheese?! If you're like me and always willing to get your hands on a bowl of mac and cheese, then this event is for you. Check out the Mac and Cheese festival happening this weekend to decide which vendor has. the best mac and cheese for yourself, and enjoy the bar with creative cocktails while you're at it. Tickets start at $45.

11 a.m - 3 p.m | 📍Lantana Place - 7415 Southwest Parkway