Last week I wrote a column titled “Spring Break 101 for locals.” This week’s column is geared more towards you tourists that are joining us for Spring Break 2023.
Y’all are headed into what is known as “Texas Week;” the nine-day span (including weekends) when the majority of Texas public schools and universities take their spring break. Historically, the last few days of Texas Week are some of the busiest days of one of the busiest weeks in Port Aransas. It is not uncommon for us to have upwards of 100,000 visitors on Friday and Saturday. We expect that a lot of those visitors will be commuting from Corpus and surrounding areas, which means traffic will be a mess beginning around noon and lasting until about 10:00 PM. If you don’t want to get stuck in the congestion, you should arrive early and plan on departing late (after enjoying a great meal at one of our local restaurants.)
While you are in town, please be respectful of our residents, neighbors and other people who live, work and visit here. You should familiarize yourself with and obey the local laws and rules of the road. The posted speed limit is 35 mph or less on most city streets and 15 mph on the beach.
Possession of alcoholic beverages on the beach is prohibited between 6 p.m. and 7 a.m. The ordinance applies only to possession in public view while on the beach. It does not apply to possession inside of tents, campers or other locations in town such as restaurants, bars, homes, motels or condominiums.
Beach rules are posted at most access points. A complete list of city ordinances can be found at Cityofportaransas.org.
The beach is a public street and all traffic laws apply and will be enforced. There are a number of blue barrels set up along the beach south of Pole 19. It is unlawful to park on the west (dune) side of the barrels or to drive within fifty feet of the water’s edge on the east side of the barrier. Just like the city streets in your hometown, dirt bikes, ATVs and similar vehicles are not allowed. You must have a permit to park on the beach. They are available at most convenience stores, IGA, City Hall and from beach vendors located near the main access roads.
Passengers may ride in the bed of a pick-up truck on the beach, but they must remain seated within the bed. Drivers are reminded that they are responsible for the conduct of their passengers, and if your friends sit on the roof, hang out the windows, ride on the nerf rails or on the tailgate, you can be cited for their unlawful actions.
Perhaps the best advice for spring break is to just relax and have plenty of patience. Many of your fellow tourists are not familiar with the area. Some will be over served and maybe loud and obnoxious. Don’t let a minor situation escalate into a major one.
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