Disneyland reopening

July 17 isn’t just the day Christopher Nolan’s Tenet is expected to open and hopefully save American movie theaters from extinction. That date also marks the 65th anniversary of California’s Disneyland, the world’s first major theme park, and The Walt Disney Company isn’t going to let the coronavirus pandemic stop the celebration.

Disney has announced that Disneyland and California Adventure will reopen on July 17, 2020, which is just a few days after Walt Disney World will open its gates in Florida. Get the details about the Disneyland reopening below.

Disneyland Reopening

Today, Disney announced plans for Downtown Disney District to open on July 9, the California-based parks to open on July 17, and the Grand Californian Hotel & Spa and Paradise Pier Hotel to open on July 23, 2020. Reservations will be required for everyone, even annual passholders, and details about the new reservation system are supposed to be revealed soon, as are details about the company’s decision to temporarily pause new ticket sales and annual pass renewals. When the properties open back up, Disney will make team members available in those areas to answer questions that guests might have about the new policies. Also:

Certain experiences that draw large group gatherings – such as parades and nighttime spectaculars – will return at a later date. While character meet and greets will be temporarily unavailable, characters will be in the parks in new ways to entertain and delight guests.

When Disneyland opened in the summer of 1955, the park was woefully unprepared for the amount of people that showed up. According to History.com, “special invitations were sent out for the opening of Disneyland on July 17. Unfortunately, the pass was counterfeited and thousands of uninvited people were admitted into Disneyland on opening day. The park was not ready for the public: food and drink ran out, a woman’s high-heel shoe got stuck in the wet asphalt of Main Street USA, and the Mark Twain Steamboat nearly capsized from too many passengers.”

Here’s hoping the park can avoid disaster this time around – though, as was announced for Disney World’s reopening, the park’s limited capacity may ultimately result in previous dining and experience reservations being cancelled, which could provide its own mini-cluster of chaos if enough people don’t read the fine print.

Shanghai Disneyland reopened on May 11, adopting safety measures like requiring advanced reservations (even for annual passholders), temperature checks upon entry, social distancing throughout the park, and guests must wear masks inside the park when they aren’t eating. Hong Kong Disneyland is expected to reopen soon, and Walt Disney World’s phased reopening in Florida begins on July 11, starting with Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom. On July 15, Epcot and Hollywood Studios will be accessible again – though anyone visiting Disney World from the tri-state area of the U.S. will have to quarantine for 14 days before entering the park.

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