It appears that Disney Springs is the next Disney resort attraction to begin a phased re-opening approach. The process will begin on May 20th.
Disney Springs is an outdoor shopping district that’s part of the larger Walt Disney World resort. The area includes retail, dining, and other attractions. While the main parks that are part of the resort will remain closed for now, Disney Springs will begin opening in phases in about two weeks. VP Matt Simon stated the following in the Disney Parks Blog:
Following the guidance of government and health officials, a limited number of shopping and dining experiences that are owned by third-party operating participants will begin to open during this initial phase. The rest of Walt Disney World Resort will remain closed, including theme parks and resort hotels.
As we continue to monitor conditions, and with the health of guests and Disney cast members at the forefront of our planning, we are making several operational changes. Disney Springs will begin to reopen in a way that incorporates enhanced safety measures, including increased cleaning procedures, the use of appropriate face coverings by both cast members and guests, limited-contact guest services and additional safety training for cast members.
During the initial opening phase, Disney Springs will have limitations on capacity, parking and operating hours. Given this unprecedented situation, we appreciate everyone’s patience and understanding as we navigate through this process as responsibly as we can.
Details about when the main parks will be open and exactly what precautions will be in place haven’t been released yet. Walt Disney World News Today did note that the website doesn’t have park hours through at least May 30th, however, so I’d feel pretty confident guessing that they will remain closed through that date at the very least.
Parts of the Shanghai Disney resort started slowly reopening in a similar way back in March, and now the main park is set to begin opening on May 11th. Could that mean the WDW Resort parks will be closed for up to two months after Disney Springs starts to open? I don’t know, but it seems like Walt Disney World Resort will be following a similar pattern if not a similar timeline.
Whenever it does happen, I expect the park openings to include many of the same restrictions being proposed at Shanghai Disney, though perhaps without the Health QR Code system, as that was never rolled out in the United States like it was in China. Social distance markers, park capacity, and face masks requirements are likely aspects of a summer time opening, though.
There’s no official word on when any of the other parks around will begin reopening, though I’ve suspected Disneyland Hong Kong may be near the top of the list for a while. However, Deadline made note that Disneyland in California has pushed back their reservation dates until July. This was, ironically, the time frame I was going to be at the parks.
Even if they do open by then, I likely won’t be going to the parks this summer, though. It feels too soon for my own comfort level, but that could be an accurate time frame for a phased reopening to begin anyway. We’ll see.
Author: Angel Wilson
Angel is the admin of The Geekiary and a geek culture commentator. They earned a BA in Film & Digital Media from UC Santa Cruz. They have contributed to various podcasts and webcasts including An Englishman in San Diego, Free to Be Radio, and Genre TV for All. They’ve also written for Friends of Comic Con and is a 2019 Hugo Award winner for contributing fanfic on AO3. They identify as queer.
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