Socially-distant lines. Mandatory masks. Empty seats on rides. Silent screaming "from the heart." This is the new normal at many theme parks around the world that have reopened during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida reopened on Saturday with reduced capacity and other safety measures in place to protect guests at the park, which has been closed since March.
Disney's Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Pamela Hymel, said in a statement on July 7, that "while Covid-19, and the risk of contracting it, is present in public places, there are many important ways that we can all help promote each other's safety" at parks. Still, many experts deem the risk of getting infected at a theme park to be too high. (Florida has seen record rates of Covid-19, with nearly 300,000 total infections as of Wednesday.)
Here's what Disney World looked like opening weekend.
Temperature screenings were conducted with a no-touch thermometer upon entering the Disney Springs area or and the Walt Disney World theme parks. (People with a temperature of 100.4 F or above, as well as anyone in their party, were not permitted inside.)
A Disney World staff member greeted guests holding a Mickey Mouse-themed decoration in front of his protective mask. Disney also sells face masks with popular characters, from Star Wars to Mickey Mouse. (Masks or cloth face coverings are required for all staff and performers and for visitors ages 2 and up.)
Main Street, USA, a thoroughfare with shops where parades take place, is typically crowded. But instead of parades, Disney offered smaller "cavalcades" where visitors saw their favorite characters from a distance.
Dinsey PhotoPass photographers used to take photos of guests on their personal devices but that is no longer allowed.
Rows of seats on rides like the Splash Mountain log flume (which will soon get a redesign to feature Tiana from "The Princess and the Frog," the first Black Disney princess) were left empty to allow for more social distancing.
While Disneyland in Anaheim, California has been unable to reopen due to state theme park regulations, the Downtown Disney shopping district opened on July 9. A sign reminded guests to wear a mask, keep their distance and practice hand hygiene.
Hand-washing stations and hand sanitizer dispensers were also installed around Downtown Disney in California so patrons can practice proper hand hygiene.