‘No hurry’ to release theme park reopening guidelines, Newsom says

Noble Horvath

CARLSBAD, Calif. — As theme parks across California push to reopen, Gov. Gavin Newsom said Wednesday that he doesn’t expect they will be able to do so anytime soon. Newsom said in a news conference that his office is no rush to release safety guidelines. “We’re going to be led […]

CARLSBAD, Calif. — As theme parks across California push to reopen, Gov. Gavin Newsom said Wednesday that he doesn’t expect they will be able to do so anytime soon.

Newsom said in a news conference that his office is no rush to release safety guidelines.

“We’re going to be led by a health-first framework and we’re going to be stubborn about it,” Newsom said. “That’s our commitment, that’s our resolve. While we feel there’s no hurry in putting out guidelines, we’re continuing to work with the industry.”

In San Diego County, SeaWorld and Legoland have been eager to fully reopen since they were forced to shut down months ago due to the coronavirus pandemic. While Legoland remains closed, it recently reopened its Sea Life Aquarium and the Miniland USA area, which is hosting families for holiday events. SeaWorld received permission in late August to reopen in a limited capacity under state guidelines for zoos and aquariums.

“It’s very complex,” Newsom said. “These are like small cities, small communities, towns. But we don’t anticipate in the immediate term any of these larger theme parks opening until we see more stability in terms of the data.”

Following Newsom’s remarks, California Attractions and Parks Association released a statement, which read in part: “Parks have spent months developing comprehensive draft guidelines with input from health and safety experts. Parks are ready to reopen with best practice protocols to provide a healthy and responsible environment for both guests and employees.”

“Each day parks remain closed further decimates the amusement park industry,” the statement continued.

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