Everything about the impact the coronavirus is having on society is unprecedented, including the spate of event cancellations in Greater Houston it has prompted. For an event listings editor such as myself, that has meant an extraordinary amount of change in an area on our site where news unfolds much more gradually.
The list of canceled or postponed events across all of CultureMap's markets, which include Houston, Dallas, Fort Worth, Austin, and San Antonio, has reached more than 100 in just days. That's a period of time where we normally add roughly half that number of events, a reversal that has been stunning to say the least.
The cancellations quickly moved from the macro to the micro. The NBA, including the Houston Rockets, was the first domino to fall, and it was quickly followed by all other sports leagues competing this time of year. Next up were big local events happening in the short term, such as the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo or the Art Car Parade.
But as more people and groups acknowledged the scope of the pandemic and governments cracked down on crowd sizes, everyone else fell in line, from museums to theater companies to performance venues. Holdouts are few and far between, and even those remaining open will likely shutter soon.
So where do we go from here? It's clear that almost no events will be taking place in the near future, perhaps even into May. But if health authorities deem it necessary to avoid group gatherings for longer, we could all be in for a long wait to get any kind of entertainment outside of our own homes.
For our part, CultureMap will still offer roundups of things to do, just not in the traditional sense. For instance, this piece on Texas state parks offering a respite for those with cabin fever.
We pride ourselves on giving readers ways to spend their free time, and we plan to continue giving you great ideas no matter the circumstance.
We will also remain on top of any news about reopenings or events happening later in the year, hoping for a brighter future than the one we face today.