Transmission electron microscopic image of an isolate from the first U.S. case of COVID-19. The spherical viral particles, colorized blue, contain cross-sections through the viral genome, seen as black dots.

Q: Can I have a family gathering on Easter?

A: There are no exceptions to following social distancing practices and Victoria County’s stay-at-home order on Easter or during the holiday weekend.

Though Easter is often a day spent with family, Dr. John McNeill, Victoria’s local health authority, said it is vital that residents remain vigilant and practice social distancing, even from relatives that would normally gather together to celebrate the occasion.

“I know Easter is a time people want to get together, but they need to remember that anybody in your family could have this virus and be asymptomatic,” McNeill said Friday. “You cannot take risks with this.”

City and county parks closed on Thursday for the holiday weekend at the direction of local officials in an effort to deter large gatherings, which are prohibited under stay-at-home orders issued at the state, county and city level.

Additionally, the Victoria County Public Health Department posted an Easter-themed video on Facebook reminding the public of requirements and best practices to prevent spread of the virus, including cleaning frequently touched surfaces and wearing a facial mask at all times in public.

Morgan Theophil covers local government for the Victoria Advocate. She can be reached at 361-580-6511, or on Twitter

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