Legoland Florida is reducing physical distancing to three feet, becoming the latest Central Florida attraction to begin rolling back COVID-19 restrictions.
“The evolution of these procedures has been done in consideration with local health partners and officials, as well as CDC guidelines to ensure families can continue to have the confidence to play safely across our resort,” Legoland Florida spokesperson Kelly Hornick said in a statement to Theme Park Tribune. “Beginning May 14, social distancing around the Resort will be marked with spaced intervals of three feet or more and temperature screening upon entry will no longer be required for guests or employees.”
The change matches regional rivals Universal Orlando and SeaWorld Orlando. Unlike those other parks, Legoland is not located in Orange County, which had recommended cutting physical distancing in half. Disney World has so far maintained the six-foot distancing standard, but is also phasing out temperature checks.
Legoland’s COVID-19 rules have differed since the start of the pandemic. The park reopened last June without requiring masks, changing its policies in mid-July to requiring guests 8 and older to wear masks on rides and inside the park’s indoor areas. The same mask rules remain in place today.
SeaWorld promotes interim CEO, but silent on 2021 coasters
SeaWorld’s new boss is the same as its old boss.
Interim CEO Marc Swanson has been promoted to the position permanently, the company announced along with its first quarter earnings Thursday. Elizabeth Castro Gulacsy has also had the “interim” tag removed from her position of chief financial officer.
“After careful consideration and working closely with Marc and Elizabeth in their interim roles over the past year, the Board of Directors is confident they are the right leaders for SeaWorld as we emerge from this pandemic and continue executing on our long-term strategic plan,” SeaWorld chairman Scott Ross said.
Swanson and Gulacsy were promoted after the last CEO, Serge Rivera, resigned in April 2020 after just five months. Before him, Gus Antorcha lasted only seven months, with both men citing the board of directors’ interference with decision-making.
The company announced a 4.5 percent drop in attendance compared to the first three months of 2020 (with the tail end of that quarter affected by the pandemic) and a 33.7 percent drop compared to the same time frame in 2019 (for a true pre-pandemic comparison). The company reported a loss of just under $45 million.
Despite the enthusiasm for pent-up demand driving more guests to the parks this summer, SeaWorld executive didn’t offer any updates on when its 2021 coasters will open, including Iron Gwazi at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay and Ice Breaker at SeaWorld Orlando.
Disneyland’s Paradise Pier will reopen June 15
Another of Disneyland’s on-site hotels will be operating come June 15.
The Paradise Pier Hotel will reopen with limited capacity and all dining locations within the hotel will remain closed.
Guests don’t have to go hungry, as the nearby Grand Californian Hotel & Spa will reopen its Storytellers Cafe and Napa Rose restaurants on May 28. Select restaurants at Downtown Disney will also provide delivery to the hotel lobby.
The Disneyland Hotel remains closed, the last piece of the Disneyland Resort yet to return from its COVID-induced slumber.