California Theme Park Revokes Distancing With Characters, Hugs Return

in Theme Parks

Sesame Place in San Diego California

Credit: Sesame Place

Guests’ experience hasn’t been quite the same since Disneyland reopened in 2021, with changes to mask mandates, Park capacity, and, of course, character interactions.

Credit: Disney

Related: Disney Moving Select “Character Sightings” To Paid Genie+ Service

Social distance has ruled the way Guests can experience character interactions at Disney Parks, but with the changing global situation, and with Disneyland Paris allowing up-close encounters again, Guests in America might be able to see regulations going back to normal sooner than they think.

character meet and greets return
Credit: Disney

Related: Disney Character Meet and Greets Returning Soon!

However, one theme park in Southern California is getting ahead of Disneyland, allowing its Guests to hug and closely interact with beloved characters.

The new Sesame Place Park opened on March 26 in South San Diego County. The 17-acre Resort is filled with shops, restaurants, shows, parades, and family-friendly attractions, including a roller coaster, as well as several water rides. Currently, Sesame Place is one of the few, if not the only, theme park in California allowing its Guests to have up-close character interactions.

Character interactions at Sesame Place
Credit: Sesame Place

One of the most interesting aspects of this new theme park is that it is a Certified Autism Center, with sensory guides designed to help parents choose the right attractions and experiences for their children or themselves.

The official website for Sesame Place shares the following regarding this groundbreaking Certification:

Sesame Place San Diego will open as a Certified Autism Center (CAC) as designated by the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES). Sesame Place San Diego will mirror Sesame Place Philadelphia, which was the first theme park in the world to achieve this designation.

Sesame Place is a Certified Autism Center
Credit: Sesame Place

Staff-wide autism sensitivity and awareness training will be completed prior to the park’s debut, and robust pre-visit planning resources, including a park-specific sensory guide will be featured on its website, making it easier for parents to plan activities that satisfy their child’s specific needs and accommodations.

Designated quiet spaces with comfortable seating will be incorporated into the park’s design.

Related: Sesame Place becomes first theme park to be designated as a Certified Autism Center

David (@thedavidvaughn) posted a video on TikTok sharing his experience during his visit to this Park.

You can watch the full video down below!

Sesame Place is now open in South San Diego County #themeparks #sesamestreet #sesameplace #sandiego

@thedavidvaughn

Sesame Place is now open in South San Diego County #themeparks #sesamestreet #sesameplace #sandiego

♬ Can You Tell Me How To Get To Sesame Street? (From “Sesame Street”) – Karaoke Version – Urock Karaoke

While Disneyland and Walt Disney World have not released any official information on when Guests can expect to have closer interactions with characters, it is interesting to see other theme parks slowly going back to normal.

Would you or your family visit Sesame Place? Let us know in the comments below!

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