Cars lined up in Texas Rangers Parking Lot R on Wednesday to receive free disposable masks from the city of Arlington amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The mask giveaway and the COVID-19 testing drive-thru at The Parks Mall at Arlington are part of the city’s work to help reopen Arlington, said Jay Warren, city communication and legislative affairs director. Everything is to help the city stay safe and get things back to normal, he said.
The masks were available for restaurants and businesses as they began to reopen, Warren said. The city wanted to make sure that each business had two masks per employee.
It all started when Tarrant County provided the city 250,000 masks, Warren said. After that, a partnership was formed with the Texas Rangers, Tarrant County, Greater Arlington Chamber of Commerce, Downtown Arlington Management Corporation and the Arlington Convention and Visitors Bureau to distribute the masks.
By using the Rangers parking lot to distribute the masks through a drive-thru delivery, it allowed city staff to handout masks through the passenger side window of vehicles while still adhering to social distancing guidelines, he said.
City communication coordinator Susan Schrock said 44,000 masks were given out during the distribution.
Ellen Timberlake-Volz, Timberlake Financial Group financial planner, said she heard about the mask giveaway on the radio, so she decided to pick some up.
Since her business is located downtown, she took advantage of the free offer.
“I've got some for me and my husband and my staff and my mom, who is older, so that'll help us a lot,” she said. “You can’t find them in stores.”
Timberlake-Volz said she would have paid for the masks but is grateful for the giveaway.
“People will maybe be more inclined to have the masks and be aware and hopefully wear them and keep everybody safe,” she said.
Decorator’s Warehouse owner Kristin Black picked up masks for her staff as well.
She said it was great that the city and its partners could come together to distribute masks for local businesses.