Disney is set to reopen Hong Kong Disneyland this week as people start to wonder when the southern California theme park will open again. While the Hong Kong park has opened and closed several times over the past year, Disneyland in California has been completely shut down since March 2020. Walt Disney World in Florida was able to successfully reopen back in July 2020 without any significant problems from the public health crisis.
Disney has announced that they will reopen Hong Kong Disneyland on February 19th. As was the case during previous re-openings, certain rides will remain shut down and the capacity will be severely limited. Masks are mandatory and so are temperature checks before getting into the park. This is the same formula that Walt Disney World has implemented and it has remained open since July. As for Disneyland, it seems that the park could reopen in the next few months, if California legislators get their wish.
Currently, theme parks in California are only allowed to reopen when their respective county reaches tier 4 of California's Blueprint For a Safer Economy (one COVID-19 case per 100,000 residents, per day). The California Attractions and Parks Association (CAPA) is working with legislators to bring theme parks down to the third tier, which would make it to where Disneyland could finally open their doors. As of this writing, only Downtown Disney is open, though the park has announced that they will be doing a special anniversary celebration for California Adventure, where they will open the park. However, no rides will be open.
Petitions have been popping up left and right as California residents beg Governor Gavin Newsom to all Disneyland to reopen. "Gavin Newsom, we demand you allow theme parks to reopen now," reads one petition. "The parks are willing to work together and establish screening and safety protocols similar to what has been successful in other states and countries during the pandemic." The main argument is that keeping the park closed is destroying the local economy while keeping thousands of employees out of work. Newsom is said to be cooperating with CAPA and legislators to come to an agreement.
Cases in California have been decreasing after a pretty intense spike. However, Gavin Newsom still has most of the state on some form of lockdown. Restaurants, bars, and gyms are not allowed to have patrons inside, but outdoor functioning is allowed at the moment. As for when these sanctions will be lifted, that is unclear, but Disney is pressing ahead with Hong Kong Disneyland, with their eyes set on opening the California theme park next. If everything goes according to plan, Disneyland could be open within a few weeks, though that will ultimately be up to Newsom, who has been extremely hesitant about opening Disneyland to the public. The Hong Kong news was first announced by the Disney Parks News Twitter account.