Disney Springs partially reopens after coronavirus pandemic closure

Dozens of shops, restaurants now accepting guests

Disney Springs welcomed guests back Wednesday after being shut down for nearly two months due to COVID-19.

ORLANDO, Fla. – Disney Springs welcomed guests back Wednesday after being shut down for nearly two months due to COVID-19.

"We are just happy to be here," Joe Carter said.

Carter and his 11-year-old daughter drove from Lakeland Wednesday morning to be one of the first people at Disney Springs.

[READ: 6 ways Disney Springs is working to keep you safe | Disney Springs reopening comes with a warning about risk]

He said getting to the property early was the right thing to do since he did not know what to expect.

“There’s a lot more social distancing, everybody has to wear the masks unless you’re eating, if you sit down at a restaurant,” Carter explained.

As Disney Springs begins a phased reopening Wednesday, they brought News 6 along to show how they are working with guests to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Disney officials said capacity at Disney Springs will be limited and guests will have to undergo temperature checks and cover their faces.

“When they did the screening, they just put the thermometer above your head and they tell you to come on in and there are a few announcements here or there,” Carter said.

[RELATED: Here’s all the shops, restaurants now open at Disney Springs | Behind the closed gates: What’s been happening at Central Florida theme parks during pandemic closures]

For now, only third party restaurants and retailers will be open to guests. The World of Disney store is expected to open next week.

Guests are now allowed back at Disney Springs, months after it closed due to the coronavirus pandemic. (News 6)

The phased reopening is seen as the first step for Disney ahead of eventually opening up the theme parks, though there is still no word yet on when that could happen.

“Disney to us is home. Disney gives us hope and it helps our imagination,” Carter said.

About the Author:

Ezzy Castro is a multimedia journalist on News 6's morning team who has a passion for telling the stories of the people in the Central Florida community. Ezzy worked at WFOR CBS4 in South Florida and KBMT in Beaumont, Texas, where she covered Hurricane Harvey in 2017. Being from Miami, Ezzy loves Cuban coffee and croquetas!