This is a developing story…
**Update 10/2 10AM PST: It has been reported this morning that the state of California will be postponing the release of their theme park opening guidelines. This comes after a dramatic set of stories dominated the Disney news sphere yesterday. First, as we reported below, the association representing theme parks (including Disney) publicly asked the State to hold off on releasing guidelines until they could be more involved. Second, as we also reported below, the news was confirmed that Disney chairman Bob Iger had stepped away from California’s Economic Recovery Task Force.
There is currently not a new date announced for releasing theme park guidelines. This further delay was likely a beneficial move for both the State and also for the theme park fans and thousands of employees who are eager for the parks to reopen. Having the theme parks more involved in these guidelines will help make them more practical in terms of operational success. Also, with the breaking news over night concerning President Trump, First Lady Melania Trump, and other top White House aides being diagnosed with COVID-19, an announcement of a large reopening plan for theme parks would likely seem tone deaf to the general public.
Stay tuned for further updates. Here at The DisInsider, we are looking forward to the parks reopening as soon as possible, at the same time we hope the guidelines and decisions are made with the best interest of the public and cast members health. The balance between public health concerns and economic well-being is a tale as old as time. The decisions made in California will have long lasting consequences and we do not envy those tasked with making them.
**Update 10/1 5:45PM PST: A Disney spokesperson has confirmed that Disney Chairman Bob Iger has left California Governor Gavin Newsom’s “Economic Recovery Task Force.” It is unclear exactly when Iger left the task force, but the timing of this confirmation is notable. The State and the theme park industry are in heated discussions about reopening, with new guidelines expected from Newsom tomorrow.
**Update 10/1 5PM PST: The OC Register is reporting that the California Attractions and Parks Association (CAPA) has asked state officials to listen to the theme park’s own recommendations and consider incorporating them into their regulations before making anything public. CAPA is based in California’s capitol, Sacramento, and represents Disneyland, Universal Studios, Knotts Berry Farm, Legoland, SeaWorld San Diego, and multiple Six Flags locations. There has been no public response to this request from the State.
Original story posted 10/1 12:45PM
A spokesperson for California’s Governor Gavin Newsom confirmed theme park opening guidelines will be released this week. The announcement will certainly be followed by a reopening date from Disney for the Disneyland Resort in Anaheim, California.
Due to California’s more cautious stance on reopening, the guidelines are excepted to provide for a slow and multi-phased approach. Disney has confirmed that it is prepared to reopen now and have been awaiting these guidelines from the state.
The DisInsider will be watching closely for further details and will report them as soon as they are available.