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Theme Parks in Florida Being Asked to Submit Proposals for Reopening

20 May, 2020


Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has announced the next steps in the state’s reopening plan, and has asked theme parks to submit reopening plans in light of COVID-19.

Ron DeSantis said that theme park operators should identify a date for reopening and provide information on how they’ll protect staff and visitors from coronavirus.

“Parks can submit reopening plans to the state,” said DeSantis. “They should identify the date certain that they believe that they could resume safe operations.

“They have to provide how they’re going to do it, how they’re going to accommodate the guests, how they’re going to protect the staff, and then they need to have an endorsement from the relevant official in their locality – Orange County Mayor, wherever you’re talking about.”

Theme parks should identify a reopening date

DeSantis also said that gyms can reopen and restaurants and retailers can operate at 50 percent indoor capacity from Monday (May 18).

“My goal on all of this is, let’s keep safety first, but let’s work and innovate to get to yes on this stuff,” said DeSantis. “I can’t tell you when this is going to be. But I think that we need to say, come up with your plan and show us what you got.”

Soon after, Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings said in a press conference that has has conversations with theme park operators, but hasn’t received any reopening plans from them.

“Suffice it to say they’re looking at later dates to reopen, and I believe that what we can expect or anticipate in our community is a measured reopening,” said Demings.

‘Come up with your plan and show us what you got’

“They will likely start with smaller business units, maybe hotels and resort-type areas, before the major massive theme parks themselves will reopen.

“But in either case clearly that is going to be sometime in June or thereafter.”

In late April, DeSantis’s Orange County Economic Recovery Task Force released an initial report with guidelines on how to reopen Orlando’s theme parks, restaurants and hotels.

Walt Disney World president Josh D’Amaro and Universal Orlando Resort’s CEO John Sprouls are both members of this task force.

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