SAN ANTONIO – Friday marked 21 days since the partial government shutdown went into effect.
A number of historical sites in San Antonio have been closed since Dec. 22, including the San Antonio Missions Historical Park.
According to park officials, all visitor centers are closed but the churches remain open because they are maintained and operated by the Archdiocese of San Antonio.
“Our visitors were disappointed that the facilities were not all open and people planned their vacations, their holidays and plan to visit the missions and they didn't have full access to all the sites,” explained Gregory Smith, a Park Ranger.
The historical park is still open to tourists and locals but the spaces visitors can access are limited. Missions San Jose, Concepcion, San Juan, and Espada are all closed.
As a result, the grounds are being maintained. Park officials said Bexar County has been helping keep the bathrooms open for visitors.
“It's hard to see my friends at the park service working and not being paid. And those not working and not getting paid. It's hard to see the people coming out and visit and not having the full experience. It's hard seeing the children out here and having social studies assignments and not being able to fully complete them,” said Rosebud Coffey, Executive Director for the San Antonio Missions Historical Park.
The Alamo remains open because it is owned and operated by the state.