UPDATE: Disneyland has not announced an official date for reopening, as per a statement from Disneyland Resort president Ken Potrock.
“We are encouraged that theme parks now have a path toward reopening this spring, getting thousands of people back to work and greatly helping neighboring businesses and our entire community," Potrock's statement reads. "With responsible Disney safety protocols already implemented around the world, we can’t wait to welcome our guests back and look forward to sharing an opening date soon.”
The original story follows below.
The COVID-19 pandemic has been impacting nearly every aspect of our lives for the past year, and even as vaccine rollout has begun, a lot of industries have only gradually begun to rebound. Theme parks have been uniquely influenced by the circumstances of the pandemic -- but it looks like Disney's various theme parks have begun to bounce back in major ways. A new report indicates that Disneyland could potentially reopen as early as April 1st, based on new reopening guidelines that were released by Californian health officials on Friday. Under the new guidelines, California theme parks would open at 15% capacity as early as April 1st, as long as the county the park resides in reaches the red tier for reopening. There is an extra caveat, though, as Disneyland would only be open to California residents upon its potential reopening.
This comes as Disney's other major American park, Walt Disney World, is reportedly completely booked going into next week's Spring Break weekend, March 15th through the 18th. Disney's Hollywood Studios reportedly has no availability for the remainder of March.
Disney's parks have served as a unique litmus test during the past year of the pandemic, from fans flocking to Walt Disney World in the days leading up to the initial shutdown, to the park reopening as early as July of last year, to multiple attractions at the park permanently being closed due to the virus's spread. The various protocols that the park has put in place have also drawn mixed reactions as well. Meanwhile, Disneyland initially planned to reopen in July as well, but was prevented from doing so by California's restrictions.
"We previously announced a proposed phased reopening of our theme parks for July 17, pending government approvals," Disney wrote in a statement at the time. "We developed enhanced health and safety protocols for both cast and guests at Shanghai Disney Resort, Hong Kong Disneyland Resort and Walt Disney World Resort that have been approved, allowing us to reopen in a responsible manner and bring our cast members back to work."
"The State of California has now indicated that it will not issue theme park reopening guidelines until sometime after July 4. Given the time required for us to bring thousands of cast members back to work and restart our business, we have no choice but to delay the reopening of our theme parks and resort hotels until we receive approval from government officials. Once we have a clearer understanding of when guidelines will be released, we expect to be able to communicate a reopening date."0comments
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