California Issues Guidance For Reopening Theme Parks (Developing News)


The state of Califonia and the theme park industry, including Disneyland, are now working together to put together guidelines for reopening after the initial plan reportedly did not sit right with the parks.

Both theme parks have been closed since mid-March, but their shopping and dining districts have been opened since the summer with approval under the county's case tier system.

The state's secretary of Health and Human Services Dr. Mark Ghaly announced plans Tuesday for reopening California's famous theme parks including the likes of Disneyland, Universal Studios and Knott's Berry Farm.

Orange County, home to Disneyland and several other large theme parks, is now at the Orange/2 Tier, indicating "substantial" threat from COVID-19.

Face coverings mandatory throughout the park unless eating or drinking.

Tensions are rising among fans and some employees of Disneyland California regarding the continued closure of the park due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Currently, large theme parks in the state are barred from opening, regardless of local infection numbers.

"They're nearly exclusively outdoors", he added.

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People. think we just want Disneyland open so we can go buy a churro. Walt Disney Co. chairman Bob Iger recently quit Gov. Gavin Newsom's economic recovery task force, and the company has announced layoffs.

"To say today's announcement on theme parks is disappointing would be a grave understatement".

"I hope one recognizes our stubbornness on a health-first, data driven decision making process is done with our eyes wide open on what's happening now around the world", Newsom said.

"We wrote you in June 2020 to tell you that we were not yet convinced that it was safe to reopen the parks on Disney's timetable", the unions wrote. Those are defined as theme parks with a capacity of 15,000 or less. "No one cares more about park employee and guest safety than the parks themselves", Executive Director Erin Guerrero said in a statement.

The state sent teams to meet with theme park operators, as well as teams to visit operating theme parks in other parts of the nation, with those teams reporting back.

Ghaly also released guidance for reopening stadiums, which he said are relatively less risky than theme parks. Red (Tier 2) indicates "substantial" spread of the virus, while orange (Tier 3) indicates "moderate" spread and yellow (Tier 4) indicates "minimal" spread of the virus in the county.

Ticket sales will be restricted to those living within a 120-mile radius of the venue, and will be restricted to advance sales and assigned seating only; no day of sales or will-call tickets will be allowed, Ghaly said.