Universal Orlando to begin phased reopening June 5

National

FILE- In this Oct. 22, 2015,file photo, park guests relax and cool off with a water mist under the globe at Universal Studios City Walk in Orlando, Fla. Universal Orlando officials announced Thursday, Aug. 1,2019, that the resort is doubling in size with plans for a fourth theme park, but they are offering almost no information on when it will open, what it will hold or how much they’re spending. The resort already operates Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure, as well as the Volcano Bay water park, in Orlando. (AP Photo/John Raoux, File)

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Universal Orlando Resort will begin a phased reopening on June 5, nearly three months after closing down because of the coronavirus pandemic, the company announced Friday.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis approved the reopening plan Friday with the recommendation of Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings, according to a Universal news release. Park officials had presented details of their plan to the county a day earlier. The plan includes the reopening of Universal Studios Florida, Universal’s Islands of Adventure and Universal’s Volcano Bay.

“We want to invite guests back to our theme parks in a cautious and thoughtful way,” Universal Parks & Resorts Chairman and CEO Tom Williams said in a prepared statement. “We have put new health and safety procedures in place for both our team members and guests. And we have worked hard to make sure our guests can enjoy their time with family and friends.”

Attendance will be carefully managed and controlled, according to the news release. Universal will soon schedule team members for training on its new procedures, with limited previews in the days leading up to the public opening, when Universal will continue to manage daily attendance.

All central Florida theme parks closed in mid-March due to social distancing guidelines meant to combat the spread of COVID-19. Both Universal Orlando and Walt Disney World have reopened shopping complexes and restaurants in the past week, with several restrictions.

Legoland Florida announced earlier Friday that it would reopen June 1. Walt Disney World and SeaWorld Orlando haven’t announced official reopening plans.

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