Guests at Fun Spot repeatedly violated Orange County’s mask mandate, records show
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – Fun Spot near International Drive has been put on notice three times in the past few months after strike teams found that guests weren’t always wearing masks while at the amusement park, according to records provided by Orange County. The first strike team visit occurred on Aug. 13 after a citizen complaint. Orange County has had a mask mandate in place for months to stop the spread of COVID-19. While strike teams have been visiting businesses to make sure they’re complying with that rule, the focus has been on educating rather than fining or punishing, according to the mayor. News 6 has contacted Fun Spot for comment.
Haunted Halloween drive-thru experience coming to Orlando
ORLANDO, Fla. The coronavirus pandemic may have put a damper on Central Floridas usual Halloween plans, but one new upcoming attraction promises to bring frights and delights in a way that doesnt violate social distancing guidelines. A debut date and location for The Haunted Road has not yet been revealed, but organizers have said that it will be a drive-thru experience that adults and families alike can enjoy from the safety of their own car. Mariko has past experience with Broadway marketing and was the creative force who brought to life the DRIP theatrical dance and rock show experience on International Drive. Before The Haunted Road event can happen, organizers plan to soon launch a Kickstarter campaign to garner financial support from the community. The masterminds behind the drive-thru attraction are also looking to hire local performers to staff the event.
Florida reports 112 new COVID-19 related deaths, more than 10,000 new cases
As Florida inches closer to reopening schools and sees guests headed back to theme parks, the state continues to report cases of COVID-19 by the thousands. In Florida, a total of 19,334 patients have been hospitalized due to severe cases of the respiratory illness. The new statistics bring Floridas total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases to 301,810 since the disease was first detected in the state on March 1. The state reported 112 new resident deaths and zero new non-resident death in Florida on Wednesday, making for a cumulative total of 4,521 COVID-19 related resident deaths and 105 non-resident deaths, bringing the overall state death toll to 4,617. Previously, the theme park strongly recommended and encouraged face masks to be worn inside the park, but the use of face coverings will now be mandatory.
Legoland to require face masks as Winter Haven enacts emergency ordinance
WINTER HAVEN, Fla. – If you’re planning a trip to Legoland or Winter Haven, you’ll now need to pack a face mask to help curb the spread of COVID-19. On Monday, Winter Haven commissioners unanimously voted to enact an emergency ordinance that would require “every person working, living, visiting, or doing business in the City of Winter Haven” to wear a face mask in any indoor space, other than an individual’s home, when social distancing is not possible. Since Legoland falls under Winter Haven city limits, the theme park will now require guests to wear a face mask to be in compliance with the emergency ordinance. Previously, the theme park strongly recommended and encouraged face masks to be worn inside the park, but the use of face coverings will now be mandatory. For the water park, masks are only recommended for use when they are dry,” park officials said on the theme park’s website.
Know before you go: Disney to require face masks with ear loops or ties for park entry
If youre planning a trip to Disney any time soon, youll need to bring your face mask with you and make sure its the right type. Disney officials specified Wednesday that all guests must wear face masks that fully cover their nose and mouth that are secured by loops or ties that go around the ears. You can read Disneys full face mask policy by clicking here. Officials with the theme park confirmed to News 6 Wednesday that some popular face-covering types like neck gaiters, a type of face covering that does not have loops that secure the mask to the face via ear loops or straps, will not be an acceptable form of a face mask to gain entry into the park. Other health and safety guidelines Disney has issued include park reservations, temperature screenings before stepping inside the parks, social distancing and limited park capacity.
Splitsville to reopen at Disney Springs July 10 after months-long closure due to COVID-19
ORLANDO, Fla. Whether you bumper-bowl or regularly play a 300 point game, youll be able to brush up on your bowling skills at Splitsville luxury bowling lanes at Disney Springs starting July 10 at 4 p.m. Bowling lane leaders said on Facebook the alley has taken great measures to engage and serve you safely. From social distancing to QR code & single-use menus to sanitized gaming, weve got your back.Splitsville closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic on March 16. Disney Springs began its phased reopening on May 20 after closing for more than a month to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
Cocoa Beach Pier now requires all guests to wear face masks as COVID-19 pandemic continues
COCOA BEACH, Fla. If youre planning a trip to the Cocoa Beach Pier, youll need to pack a face mask in your beach bag as the pier will now require all guests to wear one. The pier made the announcement on social media Friday as people flocked to Brevard County beaches to beat the heat and enjoy the long holiday weekend. According to an Instagram post, the pier will require all guests to wear a mask in an effort to keep guests as safe as possible. Bars will remain closed per state guidelines, but beverage service is available at our tables, pier leaders said in a post. To keep up with the latest news on the pandemic, subscribe to News 6s coronavirus newsletter and go to ClickOrlando.com/coronavirus.
Planning your holiday weekend? Here are the beaches and firework displays you can enjoy this July Fourth
Flagler County beaches - Flagler Beach, the Palm Coast and Beverly Beach will all be open for the Independence Day weekend. For more details, click here. For more details, click here. Seaworld Orlando Summer Fireworks (July 3 through 5) - Seaworld Orlando plans to pack your holiday weekend full of fireworks. For more info on the festive fireworks, click here.
Crayola Experience to reopen in July
ORLANDO, Fla. The Crayola Experience is ready to burst with color come July 1. The Crayola Experience has also modified some of its activities and included additional signage in the interest of social distancing. Annual pass and valid general admission ticket expirations have been extended, and to welcome new guests, Crayola Experience Orlando is replacing its full-price admission ticket with a 2020 Unlimited Pass. The $24.99 ticket purchased this year starting July 1 will be good for unlimited visits to any Crayola Experience attraction through the end of 2020. To learn more about how the Crayola Experience is working to keep guests safe during the pandemic, click here.
Actors union asks Disney to delay opening Florida parks too
The Actors’ Equity Association said that it was unclear how Disney World could “responsibly” reopen as coronavirus cases continue to soar in the Sunshine State. Disney World’s four theme parks are slated to start opening July 11. The theme parks resort has already reopened some hotels and its restaurant-and-shopping district. Orlando’s other major theme park resorts -- Universal Orlando and SeaWorld Orlando -- started welcoming back visitors earlier this month. The union represents about 600 actors at Disney World, out of a total workforce of 77,000 employees at the theme park resort.
Have plans to travel this summer despite the pandemic? A new study shows youre not alone
A study by auto club group AAA has found that despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, hundreds of millions of Americans will hit the roads and take to the skies this summer. AAA used key economic indicators to determine total number of trips, not actual traveler totals for their study. AAA reported that air travel will be off by about 74%, while rail, cruise ship and bus travel will plummet by 86%. Were it not for the pandemic, AAA would be projecting 857 million trips during the third quarter, a 3.6% increase over last year. By this analysis, the pandemic wiped out nearly 150 million trips this summer, AAA researchers said in a news release.
Florida coronavirus cases near 100,000 with new positve cases reported
The Florida Department of Health reports 3,494 new people have tested positive for the coronavirus. The new findings come one day after Florida saw its highest positive case count since the pandemic began. On Saturday, health officials reported 4,049 new cases of COVID-19. Ron DeSantis called on healthcare executives and experts Friday to address the increase in coronavirus cases the state has reported over the last two weeks crediting the increase to mostly young and healthy individuals. Lamar Smith, the president of Link Up Central Florida, said thats a sign there is still a need to help families during the coronavirus pandemic.
Florida hits new record as positive cases of COVID-19 rise above 90,000
Florida broke a new record Saturday after the Florida Department of Health released new data on coronavirus cases in the state. The surge in positive coronavirus cases comes as Florida is set to become a hub for major sports leagues. Over the past week, Florida has repeatedly reported thousands of new cases a day and on Friday more than 3,800. READ MORE: Florida unemployment hits 14.5% in coronavirus wakeSeveral restaurants and bars have temporarily closed as coronavirus cases go up in the Orlando area. To read about other restaurants and bars closing their doors in the wake of rising coronavirus cases click or tap here.
Theres no zoo without you: Central Florida Zoo works to combat $1.5M in financial losses due to COVID-19
SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. The Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Garden launched a sustainability campaign Tuesday aimed at recovering from an economic blow to its revenue due to the coronavirus pandemic. The attraction said its suffered a loss of $1.5 million in its two-month closure meant to help stop the spread of COVID-19. In its public plea for support, the zoo is calling upon the community to help it survive the aftermath of the coronavirus pandemic. The Central Florida Zoo reports March and April as historically the busiest months for attendance. Though it reopened to the public in May, zoo officials say it needs to bridge the gap in its financial losses.
Orlando Science Center reopens after 3 months of closure due to COVID-19
ORLANDO, Fla. – The Orlando Science Center reopened for the first time in three months on Monday with new safety guidelines in place to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. While museums in Florida are allowed to open at 50 percent capacity, admission to the science center is limited to 25 percent during the initial reopening with guests required to purchase timed tickets in advance. "There will be more people in the exhibit area to facilitate experiences, to answer questions and to help support social distancing," Stanford said. Jennifer Rothermel and her daughters were some of the first to explore the science center as it reopened. Hours have also been reduced during the initial reopening with the facility closed on Wednesdays for deep cleaning.
Florida coronavirus cases continue to rise as state reopens
Cases of the coronavirus continue to rise in Florida as the states businesses and attractions gradually reopen, with more than 2,000 new diagnoses reported Sunday by state health officials. The numbers reported by the state Department of Health mark the 11th out of 12 straight days in which new cases have topped 1,000. For the first time on Saturday, the Florida Department of Health announced over 2,500 new positive coronavirus cases across the state. What were seeing is of the people that are testing positive way more are in the (age) 25 to 45 than was happening two months ago, DeSantis said. The vast majority of people who test positive for the coronavirus recover and many never experience any symptoms.
FDOH reports over 2,000 new coronavirus cases in the state
Florida is seeing a new trend when it comes to the number of new coronavirus cases announced. For the past two weeks, it has been a common sight to see an additional 1,000 cases of COVID-19 announced. For the first time on Saturday, the Florida Department of Health announced over 2,000 new positive coronavirus cases across the state. SeaWorld is the second Central Florida theme park to open its gates after gaining a seal of approval from Gov. Just like other Central Florida attractions, there are social distancing markings on the ground and hand sanitizer stations throughout the park for guests.
SeaWorld reopens with enhanced health guidelines as COVID-19 pandemic continues
ORLANDO, Fla. The wait is finally over as SeaWorld Orlando opened its gates Thursday for the first time since fears of spreading the coronavirus shuttered the theme park industry. The company shut down its parks in mid-March due to the dangers of COVID-19 and furloughed hundreds of employees. We really want to make sure they are having a good experience here when they visit all of our three parks in Orlando, said Kyle Miller, SeaWorld Orlando park president. Guests will also have to make a reservation online to gain entry to all three SeaWorld parks, which will be closed on select dates. Aquatica will be closed Monday and Wednesdays, and Discovery Cove will likely be closed most Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.
Central Florida theme parks are opening, but certain tourists cant go
ORLANDO, Fla. Now that Florida's theme parks are beginning to reopen, Niya Dupree and her former college roommates, all from New York, wanted to celebrate their graduation together in Orlando. When the group walked off the plane at Orlando International Airport, the National Guard handed them contact information forms. You want us to self-quarantine but youre opening at theme parks, Jackson asked. Since then, nearly 60,000 traveler information forms have been collected on the highway, and more than 66,000 have been collected at Floridas airports, according to the governors office. It was effective.Dr. Raul Pino, the director of the Florida Health Department in Orange County, where most of the theme parks are located, said requiring visitors to quarantine while theme parks and attractions are open is not sustainable.
SeaWorld to adjust hours, reopen on select days of the week
ORLANDO, Fla. – SeaWorld will reopen its gates soon, but only five days out of the week. The aquatic theme park is slated to reopen Thursday after the coronavirus pandemic forced theme park executives to shut down in mid-March. According to the reservations feature on its website, SeaWorld will be closed each Tuesday and Thursday for the rest of 2020. Reservation calendars also reveal other SeaWorld parks will be closed on select days. SeaWorld officials said guests and employees will be required to wear face coverings and undergo temperature checks within their parks.
COVID-19 cases in Florida surpass 63,000 with more than 1,000 new cases
The Florida Department of Health again announced over a thousand new positive coronavirus cases across the state. [RELATED: Heres what to expect as Florida enters phase 2 of reopening]Multiple days this week, Florida has seen an increase of over 1,000 new coronavirus cases. On Saturday, there were 1,270 new coronavirus cases reported. On Friday, the FDOH reported 1,305 new cases of COVID-19 and on Thursday, Florida broke its record for a single-day high of newly reported cases of COVID-19, with 1,419 new casesIf you are having trouble viewing the dashboard on mobile, click here. To hear more about Central Florida theme parks working to r-open during the pandemic click or tap here.
COVID-19 cases in Florida near 63,000 as more businesses reopen
The Florida Department of Health announced new positive coronavirus cases across the state days after the State entered the second phase of reopening. The Florida Department of Health reported 1,270 new people have tested positive for the respiratory illness. [RELATED: Heres what to expect as Florida enters phase 2 of reopening]Multiple days this week, Florida has seen an increase of over 1,000 new coronavirus cases. To hear more about Central Florida theme parks working to r-open during the pandemic click or tap here. The small light at the end of the tunnel isnt spurring much optimism in the state of Florida, however.
Florida reports 1,305 new cases of COVID-19 as state enters phase 2 of reopening
Ron DeSantis says most of Florida will enter phase 2 of reopening Friday]The state has been in phase one of reopening since May 4 but the governor lifted restrictions that werent originally part of the first phase, including opening salons and barbershops. [RELATED: Heres what to expect as Florida enters phase 2 of reopening]On Thursday, Florida broke its record for a single-day high of newly reported cases of COVID-19, with 1,419 new cases reported by the Florida Department of Health since the day prior. According to the John Hopkins University and Medicine Coronavirus Resource Center, 20 states have seen increases in newly reported COVID-19 cases in the past five days. On Friday, the FDOH reported 1,305 new cases of COVID-19 since approximately the same time the day before, as well as 53 new deaths. The small light at the end of the tunnel isnt spurring much optimism in the state of Florida, however.
Gov. Ron DeSantis says most of Florida will enter phase 2 of reopening Friday
Ron DeSantis announced Wednesday that the majority of the state would take another step in his reopening plan and move to phase two during an address at Universal Orlando. “Today as we take another step, we’re applying this to the 64 counties, and obviously going to work with the three southeast Florida counties, as we go forward,” DeSantis said. DeSantis said he would work with the three southeast counties to bring them up to speed with phase two of reopening in time. “It was more than a month ago, about five weeks ago where I announced the safe, smart step by step plan for Florida's recovery,” DeSantis said. Effective May 18th, all Florida counties were permitted to enter Full Phase 1 of the #SafeSmartStepbyStep Plan for Florida's Recovery.
Swan boats return to Lake Eola with new health, safety practices
ORLANDO, Fla. – After months of closures due to the coronavirus, the city of Orlando is welcoming a few friendly fowl back to Lake Eola. As of Monday, guests can once again take Swan Boats back out onto the water. Lake Eola Swan Boats reopen June 1st! Please allow extra time for new safety procedures! pic.twitter.com/mLQD1NxMuB — Lake Eola (@LakeEolaPark) May 30, 2020City officials said new safety procedures will be in place and they are encouraging guests to be patient with wait times.
Disney, SeaWorld get approval to reopen this summer
With that green light, SeaWorld Orlando, Aquatica and Discovery Cove will open June 11; Disneys Animal Kingdom and Magic Kingdom will open July 11, followed by Epcot and Hollywood Studios on July 15. I am pleased to announce that I have received word from Halsey Beshears, Secretary of @FloridaDBPR, that @WaltDisneyWorld Resort and @SeaWorld have received approval of their re-opening plans. Interim SeaWorld CEO Marc Swanson said guests will notice signs in the park reminding them to physical distance. So it will be a very contactless entry process into the park, Swanson said Wednesday. Smaller attractions have started to open across Central Florida and Disney Springs and Universals CityWalk began accepting guests again earlier this month.
Florida reports 1,212 new cases of COVID-19, 67 more deaths
In a step towards reopening that may restore jobs to thousands of Floridians, theme parks across Central Florida are inching closer to reopening, even if the momentum is incremental. As of Friday afternoon, the Florida Department of Health reported 1,212 new cases of COVID-19 since about the same time Thursday, as well as 67 new deaths related to the respiratory illness. This brings the total number of cases of COVID-19 reported in Florida since it was first detected in the state on March 1 to 54,497, as well as 2,413 deaths. According to Disney officials, face coverings will be required for all guests ages two and up and temperature screenings will be required in some locations. Universal Orlando will be the first in Central Florida to open starting June 5 after it recently received approval from the governor.
How one interactive Orlando attraction is adapting to new COVID-19 guidelines
The health and safety of our Team Members and Guests remain our priority. KARTING EXPERIENCE:Operations/PPE: Team Members will adhere to the glove and mask protocols. *Disinfectant lockers (SaniBoXX) will be utilized as an additional precaution to eliminate lingering bacteria, Team Members in proper PPE will man the lockers. Pit Road: Pre-Race: Floor Markers will be utilized in front of SMS stations to adhere to 6 ft. distancing. Team Members will bag items for the Guests, confirming finalized items prior to transferring the items to the Guest.
Heres when Disney, SeaWorld want to open their Orlando theme parks
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. Some of the biggest theme parks in Orlando could open in just a matter of weeks. On Wednesday, leaders from Walt Disney World and SeaWorld Orlando presented plans to Orange Countys Economic Recovery Task Force detailing how they plan to safely start accepting guests again after being closed for more than two months to stop the spread of COVID-19. If that happens, SeaWorld would be the first of the two to open its parks. SeaWorld Orlando president Kyle Miller said the company would like SeaWorld and Aquatica to reopen on June 11. Exactly one month later is when Disney is looking to start accepting guests again its Orlando properties, according to senior vice president of operations at Walt Disney World resort Jim MacPhee.
Disney, SeaWorld to present theme park reopening plans Wednesday
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. Leaders from Walt Disney World and SeaWorld Orlando will present their plans Wednesday to reopen their Central Florida theme parks, which have been closed for months due to the coronavirus pandemic. The virtual presentations will take place from 10 a.m. to noon Wednesday during the Orange County Economic Task Forces meeting, which will be streamed here. Details of those plans werent immediately available, but Demings said they will have some similarities to plans that have already been presented from other attractions such as Universal Orlando Resort and Gatorland. Ultimately, Demings said theme parks need to take all the steps necessary to ensure both employees and visitors stay safe. Universal was the first major theme park to get the green light and now has announced that it will begin accepting guests again in early June.
Orlando Starflyer reopens with new safety protocols
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. – After shutting down operations on March 23 amid the coronavirus pandemic, the Orlando Starflyer reopened on Friday night. He said they reopened at 5 p.m. only to shut down two minutes later due to a thunderstorm. New cleaning protocols were also in place up International Drive at Fun Spot America on Friday night. "As we increase economic activity, we could see an increase in the number of cases, and we have seen a slight increase in the number of cases," he said. Park owners said they're confident their new safety measures will make a difference, and they're banking on a successful Memorial Day weekend.
Universal Orlando to reopen its parks starting in June
ORLANDO, Fla. – Universal Orlando got the go-ahead Friday to open all three of its Central Florida parks starting June 5. John Sprouls, executive vice president and chief administrative officer for Universal Parks & Resorts, presented Universal’s reopening plan to Orange County’s economic recovery task force Thursday. On a new section of its website dedicated to providing responses about the reopening, Universal Orlando listed these safety measures:Guests and team members are required to wear face coverings. Anyone with a temperature of 100.4 degrees or greater will not be able to enter Universal CityWalk or the theme parks. “We want to invite guests back to our theme parks in a cautious and thoughtful way,” said Tom Williams, chairman and chief executive officer for Universal Parks & Resorts.
Legoland announces reopening date after receiving governor’s approval
WINTER HAVEN, Fla. – Legoland Florida Resort announced Friday that it will officially reopen to guests on June 1. The news comes days after Legoland Florida executives presented their reopening plan to Winter Haven city commissioners. RELATED: Legoland reopening plan heads to state officials for final approvalLegoland’s reopening plan includes “reduced capacity, cashless payments, social distancing practices and enhanced cleaning regimes.”The commission approved the plan to reopen June 1, exactly three months after the park closed its gates to slow the spread of COVID-19. In addition, we have also sought guidance from our partners at AdventHealth,” said General Manager of LEGOLAND Florida Resort Rex Jackson. “We’re ready to play, and we look forward to reopening LEGOLAND Florida Resort as a safe and memorable place for families to play again.”Below is what guests can expect when visiting the park after its reopening.
Fun Spot to reopen ahead of Memorial Day weekend
ORLANDO, Fla. Fun Spot, which has been pushing to be allowed to reopen after its extended coronavirus closure, will be allowed to do just that in time for Memorial Day weekend. During an Orange County Economic Recovery Task Force meeting on Monday, CEO John Arie, Jr. said he was hoping to be allowed to open Friday. pic.twitter.com/ZUdqoE5Yhj Orange County Mayor Jerry L. Demings (@OCFLMayor) May 21, 2020John Chidester, the vice president of marketing for Fun Spot America, said he expects a good turnout this weekend. For example, every other row on rides will be empty and the park will operate at 50% capacity to begin with. Shortly after Fun Spots reopening announcement, Universal Orlando sent out an alert notifying guests that its parks would soon begin operating.
Here’s all the shops, restaurants now open at Disney Springs
ORLANDO, Fla. – Disney Springs started accepting guests Wednesday for the first time in months as the phased reopening of the shopping and dining district began. On the Walt Disney World website, a COVID-19 liability disclaimer has been posted ahead of the reopening. You must follow all posted instructions while visiting Walt Disney World Resort. By visiting Walt Disney World Resort, you voluntarily assume all risks related to exposure to COVID-19. Walt Disney WorldHere is the full list of businesses opening Wednesday:4 Rivers Cantina Barbacoa Food TruckAnthropologieThe Art Corner by Artistic Talent GroupBasinBlaze Fast-Fire’d PizzaThe BOATHOUSE®Chapel HatsChicken Guy!
Disney Springs partially reopens after coronavirus pandemic closure
ORLANDO, Fla. Disney Springs welcomed guests back Wednesday after being shut down for nearly two months due to COVID-19. 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. Disney officials said capacity at Disney Springs will be limited and guests will have to undergo temperature checks and cover their faces. Guests are now allowed back at Disney Springs, months after it closed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Whats open in Orlando: Everything you can visit amid the coronavirus pandemic
Of course, not everything is open just yet, which is why well update this story as more locations start to open their doors. Check out the list below of things open in Central Florida:Treetop Trek: The Brevard County zipline park will open Saturday, May 23 with reduced hours. Leu Gardens: Not only has this Audubon Park botanical gardens remained open, its also been free for the past few weeks. ICEBAR Orlando: Guests can cool down and grab a drink and a bite to eat at this I-Drive ice-themed attraction. WonderWorks Orlando: A pop-up on the I-Drive attraction indicates that it will be open soon, but an exact date hasnt been provided yet.
Here’s what Fun Spot, Gatorland, Icon Park want to do to keep you safe
ORLANDO, Fla. – Some of Orange County’s smaller attractions said they have strong guidelines in place for keeping guests safe, and they want to open by the end of the week. Leaders from Fun Spot America, Gatorland and Icon Park presented their plans to the Orange County Economic Recovery Task Force on Monday. “Our priority is number one the customer’s safety comes first,” said Chris Jaskiewicz with Icon Park. “Keep things clean and keep people healthy.”All three parks have been closed amid the coronavirus pandemic. “Our goal is to seek approval from the task force and from Mayor Demings and open our park this Saturday, May 23,” said Mark McHugh with Gatorland.
Daytona Lagoon Waterpark shares new health guidelines, no reopening date announced
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. The Daytona Lagoon Waterpark and Family Entertainment Center announced their new guest health and safety guidelines Monday as the park anticipates reopening once it is safe to do so amid the coronavirus pandemic. While many businesses are stating their focus on cleanliness and safety, Daytona Lagoons changes build on a standard that already exceeded official requirements, park officials said Monday. To prepare, park management has undergone a review of the entire operation, from individual attractions to the type of cleaning products, capacity restraints for social distancing measures to the specific location of readily available hand sanitizer.Park officials said measures taken to ensure guest health, safety and best practices upon opening would include:Limited capacities by way of social distancing measures per CDC guidelinesProviding masks to all team members with a requirement to wear them while on dutyTemperature checks and health screenings for all team members, sending home those with signs of symptomsSanitizer stations for guest use throughout the facilityAdded staff dedicated to sterilization procedures during operating hoursContinual sanitization of games and attraction high touch-pointsModifications to food and beverage procedures and offeringsSun-bathing lounge chairs and dining seating spread out for distancing measuresThe new reopening guidelines followed findings by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that stated there is no evidence that coronavirus can be spread to people through the water in pools, hot tubs, spas, or water play areas. Proper operation and maintenance (including disinfection with chlorine and bromine) of these facilities should inactivate the virus in the water. While there is an ongoing community spread of COVID-19 of the virus that causes COVID-19, it is important for individuals as well as owners and operators of these facilities to take steps to ensure health and safetyPark officials have not yet released a reopening date for the waterpark and entertainment center but said updates and further information can be found at www.daytonalagoon.com and by following Daytona Lagoon on Facebook.
Orange County mayor doesnt expect theme parks to begin opening until at least June
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. News broke Friday that theme parks across Florida can soon begin submitting their plans for reopening but locally, the Orange County mayor doesnt expect Walt Disney World, Universal Studios or any of the other major attractions to begin the phased opening process until at least June. Those plans must include a date for when theyd like to open, guidelines for keeping patrons and employees safe and an endorsement from an appropriate elected official, in this case Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings. Theme parks in the Orlando area have been shuttered since mid-March due to guidelines in place to stop the spread of COVID-19. Hours after DeSantis spoke, Demings said that he hadnt received any reopening plans from Disney, Universal or SeaWorld. The mayor said theme parks could be allowed to open under the second phase of the governors reopen Florida plan, although its unclear at this point when that phase will begin.
Disney Springs to begin phased reopening May 20 after coronavirus closure
ORLANDO, Fla. Disney Springs, which has been closed for more than a month due to the coronavirus pandemic, will begin slowly reopening on May 20. The news came Thursday via a Walt Disney World blog post. On The Walt Disney World website, a COVID-19 liability disclaimer has been posted ahead of the reopening. Walt Disney WorldResort theme parks and hotels will remain closed even as the dining and shopping complex opens once again. Disney Springs closed its doors March 17, two days after Magic Kingdom and the other Disney theme parks shut down.
Restaurants at Icon Park on International Drive to begin opening for dine-in
ORLANDO, Fla. – Orlando’s once-bustling tourist district is starting to see movement again for the first time in more than a month as restaurants at Icon Park on International Drive begin accepting customers once again. At Icon Park, the home base for Orlando’s Wheel, select restaurants are opening their dining rooms and outdoor patios. Sugar Factory is accepting reservations for Wednesday. Carrabba’s Italian Grill and Outback Steakhouse are donating meals to the Orange County Fire Department Substation 57 and Orange County Sheriff’s Department Sector 5 Substation as part of the Icon Park meal donation program. No new opening date has been given for country star Blake Shelton’s restaurant Ole Red, which was supposed to start accepting guests at its new spot next to the Wheel on April 13.
Wild Florida closes drive-thru safari park amid coronavirus pandemic
OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. – The last operational attraction at Wild Florida, the drive-thru safari, has shut down as coronavirus continues to spread across Florida. The airboat and gator adventure park announced on social media Saturday that the drive-thru safari would be closing that same day. “Wild Florida Fans, it is with heavy hearts that we inform you effective today, Saturday, April 4th our Drive-thru Safari Park will be closed until further notice. The 85-acre safari park remained open because guests could stay with their own party in their own vehicles while interacting with more than 100 native and exotic species, so there was no need for them to come in contact with other visitors. To keep up with the latest news on the pandemic, subscribe to News 6′s coronavirus newsletter or go to ClickOrlando.com/coronavirus.
Ripley’s Believe It or Not is first I-Drive attraction to close amid coronavirus pandemic
ORLANDO, Fla. – Shops and attractions on International Drive are beginning to feel the pressure as major attractions around Central Florida close to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus. The first attraction on I-Drive to shut its doors is Ripley’s Believe It or Not Odditorium. RELATED: From tickets to FastPasses: The latest on Disney World’s coronavirus closure | This will be the longest closure ever for Disney World“Following advice from health officials to practice social distancing, Ripley’s will be temporarily closed starting on Wednesday, March 18,” Ripley Entertainment Inc. told News 6. If you have already purchased a ticket, the ticket is valid for one year from the date of purchase. We look forward to reopening our doors, and welcoming our guests back soon,” Ripley’s said in a statement.
Warming up at the attractions Sunday
ORLANDO, Fla.- – The sun will be out for most of the day Sunday making for a comfortable afternoon at the parks. After a cooler start, temperatures rebound back into the upper 70s. SundayIt will be pleasant and dry for fireworks Sunday night. Temperatures climb back to the low-to-mid 80s Monday and Tuesday with dry weather. Rain chances increase Wednesday.
Lawsuit: Volcano Bay slide left tourist paralyzed
ORLANDO, Fla. – A New York man claims in lawsuit that his neck snapped while he was riding the Punga Racers water slide at Universal's Volcano Bay, causing a spinal cord injury that left him paralyzed. Documents show the man decided to race his 15-year-old daughter, 13-year-old daughter and 7-year-old daughter on the Punga Racers, which has four lanes to accommodate multiple riders. Attorneys allege the man followed employees' instructions to lie with his stomach on a mat they provided, then slide down headfirst. The impact caused a compression injury to the man's spine that left him paralyzed, facedown in the water, attorneys said. The suit claims Universal was negligent by failing to maintain and inspect the ride, failing to supervise riders and failing to warn visitors about the potential dangers.
911 calls detail trampoline park injuries in Central Florida
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Broken bones, dislocated joints and injuries to patrons' heads and necks are just some of the medical calls that paramedics have responded to at Central Florida trampoline parks, 911 calls placed from those entertainment facilities reveal. CBS News reports that at least six people have died of injuries at trampoline parks in the past seven years. An 11-year-old boy reportedly broke his arm at that same trampoline park in February 2018, according to another 911 call. Few lawsuits filed against trampoline parks in Central FloridaA News 6 review of court records found very few lawsuits filed against Central Florida's trampoline parks. After buying three existing trampoline parks in Florida three years ago, Pikus said he spent hundreds of thousands of dollars bringing the facilities up to trampoline park standards set by ASTM International.
Marion County is the place to go for the highest, fastest zip line
Located in Ocala, The Canyons Zip Line and Adventure Park has the longest and fastest zip line in Florida and it offers a fun-filled day of adventure. "When we found this place it was an abandoned mine," Tracy Walker, president of Canyons Zip Line and Adventure Park, said. "The zip line course is the highest, fastest in Florida and, yeah, it's spectacular views," Walker said. The longest zip line on the course is 1,150 feet. The Canyons Zip Line and Adventure Park is open seven days a week.
I-Drive attractions offer special event for children with sensory sensitivity
For parents such as Todd Andrus, who has a son with sensory sensitivity, sometimes local attractions can be a challenge. Karen Thompson, a volunteer chair for the Central Florida chapter of Autism Speaks, explained that these children are just trying to cope with the sensory overload. Madame Tussauds Wax Museum and Sea Life Orlando Aquarium will each have a room called a quiet space. It will be for parents to bring in their children in case they are feeling some anxiety or become overwhelmed by the attractions. Places like Madame Tussauds and Sea Life want to do their part to make it easier for everyone to enjoy their time with wax figures of celebrities and colorful sea life.
'Night zipping' coming to Treetop Trek at Brevard Zoo
MELBOURNE, Fla. – Brevard Zoo is ringing in the new year with a new nighttime zip lining experience at Treetop Trek. The "night zipping" experience will be on Treetop Trek's "Zip Only" course, which features nine zip lines over the zoo's wetlands habitat. "Wild animals like owls, bobcats and unusual insects are commonly heard and sometimes seen," the zoo said in a news release. "Guests will also have the chance to experience Treetop Trek’s new continuous belay system, which eliminates the need to clip in and out before and after each zip line." Private zip tours will be available on demand Fridays and Saturdays through March when no public tours are available.
New Donald Trump wax figure coming to Madame Tussauds in Orlando
ORLANDO, Fla.- – Madame Tussauds in Orlando has begun creating a wax figure for newly elected president of the U.S, Donald Trump. The new wax figure will also be displayed in locations in Washington, D.C., New York and London. All locations are set to complete the wax figures in time for the presidential inauguration on Jan. 20.