During Governor Gavin Newsom’s press conference today, he addressed theme park reopening guidelines, which have become a contentious issue in the state of California. Governor Newsom stated, in part:
“This week, just to preview, we’ll be visiting with some of the larger theme parks, continuing some of those conversations back and forth. We continue in good faith to try to work to get where I know everybody wants to go, and that’s to get people back to work, and also to create more entertainment options. But also we need to do so in a safe way. We need to do so with a health-first frame.”
Now, OC Register has reported that various California state agencies will also be visiting theme parks this week in a bid to help develop reopening plans that suit both the theme park industry and the Governor’s office.
State health, safety, business and economic development agencies plan to tour California theme parks this week to help inform the development of reopening guidelines by Gov. Gavin Newsom and his administration.
“We have planned visits to theme parks in-state this week in collaboration with theme park operators who requested the exchange of information and ideas,” according to California Health and Human Services Agency spokesperson Kate Folmar. “These visits will help inform our pending theme park guidance.”
The delegation will include the California Department of Public Health, California Division of Occupational Safety and Health and the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development, according to Folmar.
OC Register also shared that CAPA is pleased with the news that Governor Newsom and state agencies will be making theme park visits in the coming days:
California Attractions and Parks Association [CAPA] executive director Erin Guerrero applauded Newsom’s decision to have a team visit California’s theme parks to review COVID-19 health and safety protocols.
“It was heartening to hear Gov. Newsom share that his administration is ready to work with the theme park industry,” Guerrero said in a statement. “We applaud the governor for accepting our invitation to visit California’s iconic parks and we are eager to work together so theme parks can reopen responsibly and soon. Doing so will allow tens of thousands of people to get back to work and provide a much-needed jump start for local and state economies that have been decimated by the shutdown.”
The Inside the Magic team also recently learned about some of the protocols Disneyland officials have already put in place thanks to guidance from the Orange County Health Care Agency. Anaheim Head of Communications Mike Lyster told us, specifically speaking about Disneyland’s restaurants:
“And then, the kitchens they showed us have extensive floor markings, they have sanitizing stations everywhere with sanitizer spray and a clock…you may end up cleaning your station before that, but the clock goes off at periodic amount of time [i.e. every hour or 90 minutes] and you hear that and you clean.”
“Restaurants were something that the Orange County Health Care Agency brought to their [Disney’s] attention…so they took that advice from our health care agency and made those changes.”
It is important to remember that neither Governor Newsom nor any state agency directors have confirmed that they will visit Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park this week, but it seems likely that they will, given the sentiments shared above.
What do you think about California state agencies visiting theme parks this week? Do you think we’re moving closer to a Disneyland Resort reopening announcement?