With Universal Orlando getting the approval to reopen to the public beginning on June 5, people are beginning to wonder when exactly Walt Disney World Resort will reopen. More specifically, people are wondering how the Orlando theme parks will handle the water parks.
This leaves many questioning, when will Walt Disney World Resort reopen its water parks — Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon? Will they reopen these along with their theme parks? Will they wait a few more months after reopening the Disney parks before reopening the water parks?
Let’s breakdown everything we know thus far including what the CDC is saying about the virus and public pools, what Governor Ron DeSantis has stated regarding Disney’s water parks, and how Universal Orlando is handling the reopening of their water park, Volcano Bay.
What The CDC Is Saying
On Wednesday, May 20 the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shared new guidelines for swimming pools during the current global pandemic. The new guidelines share that although there is no evidence that connects the spread of the virus through water, it is still important to take proper health and safety precautions moving into the summer months.
“There is no evidence that the virus that causes COVID-19 can be spread to people through the water in pools, hot tubs, spas, or water play areas,” the CDC stated on its website. “Proper operation and maintenance (including disinfection with chlorine and bromine) of these facilities should inactivate the virus in the water.”
However, the CDC also wants to remind individuals to take precautions. “While there is ongoing community spread of the virus that causes COVID-19, it is important for individuals as well as owners and operators of these facilities to take steps to ensure health and safety.”
Governor Ron DeSantis
Vice President Mike Pence met with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis during a Florida tourism roundtable on Wednesday. During the meeting, DeSantis brought up the conversation of water parks including Disney’s Blizzard Beach. DeSantis stated that in his eyes, these water parks are “pretty low risk” since the CDC stated that the virus is unlikely to be trasmitted through water.
Volcano Bay at Universal Orlando
With Universal Orlando getting approval to reopen its theme parks beginning on June 5, it’s leaving many to wonder about their water park — Volcano Bay.
Universal Orlando has announced that along with its theme parks, Volcano Bay would also be opening up on June 5. Along with the opening, comes may questions including these FAQ’s on Universal Orlando’s website.
How will you implement social distancing guidelines at Universal’s Volcano Bay?
Overall, Universal’s Volcano Bay will follow the same guidelines and procedures as the other theme parks. Some of the specific measures we’re taking to implement social distancing at Volcano Bay include:
- We will limit capacity on each attraction – including rivers and pools
- For multi-person raft rides, only one travel party will be allowed to ride in a single raft. Please note that Volcano Bay’s standard height and weight requirements will be applicable.
- Lounge chairs will be placed in a fashion that allows travel parties to sit together, while also maintaining at least six feet of distance between other guests.
At Volcano Bay, will I have to wear my face covering while on the slides?
Face coverings are recommended when guests cannot socially distance. They will not be permitted on slides and in pools.
Will all Volcano Bay team members wear face coverings?
Face coverings are required for team members in “dry” roles. Team members who have “wet” roles, such as lifeguards, will wear a balaclava when they cannot socially distance. These will not be worn on slides or in pools for safety reasons.
What Does This Mean For Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon?
Seeing Universal Orlando reopen Volcano Bay along with both of its theme parks, and knowing that Governor Ron DeSantis supports the idea of reopening water parks, we can expect Walt Disney World to do the same when they announce the reopening on their resort.
We also expect Disney World to follow similar guidelines when they reopen their water parks — Blizzard Beach and Typhoon Lagoon — including the recommendation of face coverings, social distancing guidelines, and more.
Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings shared on Thursday, May 21 that Walt Disney World should be revealing its reopening plans during a meeting sometime this week.
Would you feel comfortable visiting the water parks at Walt Disney World when they reopen? Let us know in the comments.