Hairstyling cut by virus

Salons, barbershops remain closed Only a few weeks ago, Rocco Bianconi’s business was flourishing. Having built Rocco’s Barbershop into a downtown staple, he was constantly busy with loyal clientele. “The people whose hair I cut, they’re not just customers, they’re friends,” Bianconi said. “I can truly say that.” But then the COVID-19 outbreak swept across the globe and ushered in a new normal – not only for Bianconi, but for business owners everywhere. Let’s call it Rocco’s modern life. And as some Texas businesses are slowly allowed to reopen beginning today, Bianconi and other barbers and hair salon owners are left in limbo. Gyms, tattoo shops, hair salons, barbershops and massage parlors

Showing how they feel

Teachers, families connect during Pilot Point parade Teachers and staff of Pilot Point Elementary School decked out their cars, trucks and bikes with signs and decorations to drive them all over town on the evening of April 17. The purpose was to let the kids know how much they missed them during the COVID-19 crisis. The first Elementary Teacher Parade was organized in response to the school closure to COVID-19, Principal Rae Ann Strittmatter said. “We just wanted to let our students know we’re out here, and we love them and are missing them and do the fun parade to wave at everybody,” she said. Cubby the Bearcat participated in the parade, riding a dirt bike and wearing a shirt that said “I

Lusk tackles busy start at City Hall

Pilot Point City Manager Britt Lusk started Monday in the midst of the countywide stay-at-home order. Lusk, who came to the role from Tucumcari, New Mexico, along Route 66, described his first day as a whirlwind. “It’s been a great first day but really busy,” Lusk said. “I feel like I’ve been able to come in here and hit the ground running because [Interim City Manager Terry] Roberts had helped a lot.” He also said that “nothing’s typical business today” on his first day. “Not to mention that most people are working from home, and we’re in this pandemic right now, and so it just kind of adds that extra layer of everything to it,” he said. Lusk, his wife Evon and their two teenage sons Ayden

Governor closes state parks

Ray Roberts closes gate to visitors, reopening date unsure Effective 5 p.m. Tuesday, all Texas State Parks will be closed to the public in response to the COVID-19 pandemic at the direction of Gov. Greg Abbott. Texas state parks will be closed to the public to maintain the safest environment for visitors, volunteers and staff, according to a press release from the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department will continue to push out up-to-date information with public health recommendations and announce a re-opening date accordingly. “Despite the implementation of increasingly restrictive visitor use measures to help minimize the transmission of COVID-19 at pa

Community faces coronavirus

Local churches find ways to connect with congregations from afar Community above isolation. That has been a focus at Midway Church for more than a year, but it hits a new chord now, while the world faces the coronavirus pandemic, forcing churches to preach to their congregations remotely. “The church is not a facility that we assemble in, but it is a body, that even disconnected, we’re just having to be creative about how we stay connected,” Lead Pastor John Theisen said. While some churches are choosing to broadcast live sermons, John said, prerecording the church’s message seems to work better for Midway. “So far this has been OK,” John said. “I’ve had friends at other churches that tried

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