It’s hard to determine if Hong Kong Disneyland or Walt Disney World will be the next park to reopen as both are making progress. Hong Kong is now rolling out a soft opening for cast members.
The progress at Hong Kong Disneyland has been much quieter than the progress at the park in Florida, but it’s been making progress nonetheless. Now we have word that they are having a soft opening for Cast Members from May 19th (today) through May 21st and they are moving around some equipment in preparation for opening.
#Day115WithoutHKDL | HKDL is preparing for its reopening. Starting 19 May to 21 May, there will be soft reopening for Cast Members.#hongkongdisneyland #hkdisneyland #hkdl #disneyparks #香港ディズニーランド #香港ディズニー #ディズニーランド #disney #hk #hongkong pic.twitter.com/8IcjaC7Tnc
— HKDL of Fantasy (@hkdl_of_fantasy) May 19, 2020
Update on May 19, 2020: Some tree decorations have been placed next to the tents, which are located next to the open area near the Disneyland Resort MTR Station.
— Disney Magical Kingdom Blog (@DMK_Blog) May 19, 2020
This is far more progress than Walt Disney World has had, and WDW News Today takes this as a sign that HK will be the next park to open, going as far as the call it ‘imminent.’ WDW New Today is a pretty solid source for this stuff, so if they think Hong Kong Disneyland will beat Florida in the race to open the parks again, I’d give that opinion a fair amount of weight. As I said in our most recent FEELINGS webcast, if HK is going to be next, it’ll probably be sudden and without a lot of preamble, and this sudden rush of information kind of bolsters that opinion.
The Florida parks are not without their progress, however. Disney Springs will be partially reopening tomorrow, May 20th, making it the second Florida resort to ease into reopening after Universal opened their City Walk did so earlier this week. There is no word on when any of the parks themselves will actually allow guests inside. We do know that masks will be a thing at Walt Disney World, though, so don’t plan on going if you aren’t comfortable with that (and a vocal minority have made it clear they are not comfortable with that, so just stay home guys).
Whichever park pulls the trigger first, it’ll be the second to reopen after Shanghai Disney did last week. All eyes are on Shanghai right now as we see if the measures put in place were enough to prevent an outbreak. I hate treating the park like a canary in a coal mine, but that’s essentially what it is at this point. Were the precautions enough? Was it too soon? We’ll see. I hope things go well and we don’t see another outbreak.
Whatever happens, I look forward to the day when all the parks can reopen and we can get back to some semblance of normalcy. It may be a while before other parks can safely do so and I don’t at all want any of them to rush towards reopening, but it’s a worthwhile goal to have on the horizon. We’re in a pretty dark period of human history and we can use a little Disney magic to brighten our day. We just have to do it carefully, safely, and have a little patience as we work out the kinks.
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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