Newsom Continues to Push Theme Parks Off

Edited: September 16, 2020, 4:42 PM

Even with all the pressure from the CAPA, Disney, and other theme park companies to give out at least some guidance for reopening the parks, Newsom stated,
"We will be making announcements soon as it relates to theme parks… and making additional guidelines in those space(s)…".

Additionally, the Anaheim mayor called for Newsom to give guidance after they announced that the city "faces a $100 million budget deficit as a result of the extended coronavirus closures". An Anaheim spokesperson also stated, "What we need is guidance and an economic recovery roadmap so we know that we won’t go from coronavirus to a second great recession".

Any thoughts?

Replies (12)

September 16, 2020, 5:02 PM

As I just posted on my social media...

Order in which we care about people's opinions on theme parks reopening:
1) Infectious disease specialists studying Covid-19
2) Front-line, in-park employees
3) Nearby tourism industry workers
4) Theme park fans who wear masks
5) Theme park management
6) Politicians
7) Media that don't cover theme parks daily
8) People who don't ever visit theme parks

Carry on, Gov. Newsom. People are more important than money. When it is time to reopen parks, do. But don't let any business bark its way to the front of the line.

September 16, 2020, 5:56 PM

Haha yes Robert, well said. I'd fall into category #4. I'd love to see that list on a tier list system with "theme park fans who dont wear masks" to be all the way at tier Z. It's abysmal to see all of these articles and videos showing people throwing tantrums in the parks.

September 16, 2020, 7:01 PM

In May, when we started reopening, what we knew said that theme parks were a bad idea. By the middle of summer, when a fair number of states were open with outdoor tourist attractions operating with enhanced safety procedures and no outbreaks linked to them, it indicated the risk of operating places like theme parks was far lower than initially believed. At this point, there is no reason backed by science and data to keep the parks closed, there are strong economic reasons to open them, and I believe it is purely political motives keeping them closed. Believe what you will, but my stance is that Newsom is trying to suppress California's economy enough that the federal government will be forced to give the state a bailout, which IMO should be a career ending move if found to be true.

Now, if California was actually fully closed down, I would in no way say that theme parks should be open. However, here's what is currently open in Orange County:

-Essential Businesses
-Medical Services
-Hair Salons
-Shopping Centers
-Personal Care Services (including indoors)
-Museums (including indoors)
-Zoos (including indoors)
-Aquariums (including indoors)
-Places of Worship (including indoors)
-Movie Theaters (including indoors)
-Gyms (including indoors)
-Fitness Centers (including indoors)
-Restaurants (including indoors)
-Family Entertainment Centers

Yet for some unexplained reason, it is still considered too dangerous to visit Disneyland. Heck, I went to Taste of Knott's last month, and people were saying they would have felt safer with the rides open because it would spread people out more rather than creating crowds on the walkways. Based on where we're at, there is no reason theme parks should remain closed in California any longer, and if any decided to sue, I'm pretty confident they'd win.

September 16, 2020, 9:42 PM

In Illinois, we've been open in Phase 4 for over two months but Six Flags Great America remains closed. So it's not just California as states are wary of any eruptions especially after messes like the Sturgis bike rally spreading and now Big Ten starting again.

Edited: September 16, 2020, 11:17 PM

@AJ - Yeah when I attended Taste of Knott's I was a bit perplexed about the situation. I've heard the main reason parks aren't open while other business are is because of the prolonged periods of time guests stay at each establishment. However, most days of the event are from 12-9pm. That's the same operational hours as the Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios. It's longer than Epcot, Animal Kingdom, all operating Six Flags parks, all operating cedar fair parks, etc (SDC, Kentucky Kingdom, holiday world, and whatnot) at the moment.

So if someone were to stay all nine hours, then whats the difference between the two? Yes one can say that rarely anyone will stay the same amount of time at a food festival as they will a theme park, but during a time of Covid I would assume that people leave earlier at parks because of shorter wait times and frustrations over a mask. I will always put people's safety first, but I find it a hypocritical situation. With constant cleaning and sanitization, social distancing, limited capacity, and other health precautions in place, I believe that the parks could reopen if Taste of Knott's is able to be open.

September 17, 2020, 11:00 PM

I would not be surprised if the California parks take a page out of Kings Island's playbook and sue the state government to reopen. Especially with the news coming out of Pennsylvania ruling that their lockdown was unconstitutional.

Edited: September 18, 2020, 2:52 PM

I think AJ hit it on the head. Besides how could Disneyland get the ok to open back in July before the spike in covid 19. We are now at the same levels as we were back then.Downtown disney is open, is the park that different? There both out in the open, and I'm sure the attendance would be controlled as downtown.I think newsom likes to practice control over everyone. Or maybe he's taking advice from his aunt, Pelosi!!

Edited: September 23, 2020, 3:49 PM

RN: "But don't let any business bark its way to the front of the line."

Me: Your points are well taken. But you could raise them without going low with this sort of snark. I live with a WDW CM who is heartbroken because she remains furloughed. It's not helpful when the media assumes that private interests are solely motivated by cash and that a company that is as innovative as Disney is incapable of keeping its employees and guests safe.

TPI should hold itself to the standard it has maintained for the last two decades. That comment does not meet that standard.

September 24, 2020, 7:52 PM

Knott's Berry Farm is clearly getting ticked off. It's only a matter of time before the park chains start taking legal action to get up and running.

September 29, 2020, 6:45 PM

The "front of the line" metaphor, implies Disney should wait its turn. That other business models are ahead of it and that by opening Disney would be to the detriment of others. This is inaccurate.

September 29, 2020, 8:00 PM

I mean...Disney technically is waiting for it's turn lol.

When they reopen, both sides will be at a detriment. There is always a possibility that the virus could be caught inside Disney and bring harm to others. That is just a possibility. The other side is loosing jobs and bringing the economy/people's livelihood down. That however is much more than possibility, we know it to be true. Tough decisions are when both sides could cause negative consequences.

Edited: October 1, 2020, 2:44 PM

Here it is. "California plans to issue reopening guidelines this week that will allow Disneyland, Universal Studios Hollywood and other theme parks in the state to resume operations after more than six months of coronavirus closures, according to state officials."

So by "end of the week" does that mean either today or tomorrow? A business week or the end of the actual week?

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