Hong Kong Disneyland To Temporarily Close Again After Jump In COVID 19 Cases

BREAKING: Hong Kong Disneyland to Reclose After Increase in COVID ...

Starting on July 15th Hong Kong Disneyland will close after Hong Kong is experiencing a spike in Covid 19 cases. After three straight weeks of not recording a single case, the city now has over one hundred new cases. In response, the government has tightened restrictions of gatherings limiting them to 10 people instead of the previous 50 people.

These restrictions will be in place for seven days and then will be re-evaluated, so it is possible the park will be able to open up in the next week or two. Hong Kong and China in general has excellent contact tracing and they have been able to nip any local outbreaks quickly and I expect the same for Hong Kong.

During this time, the resort hotels will still be operating on a modified schedule and adjusting their needs based on demand.

Legoland New York Delayed For a Full Year

LEGOLAND New York Resort Announces July 4th Opening

Due to the coronavirus pandemic and the lack of construction progress before the pandemic Legoland New York has decided to push back their opening a full year to Summer 2021. The reason they are pushing it back a whole year is because this park is going to have a seasonal operating schedule which means it would be closed in the winter time so if they could not open this summer then there would be no point in opening the park this year.

Legoland New York is projected to be the largest Legoland park in the United States with over 150 attractions and a exclusive unique Lego Factory dark ride where the guests get to be transformed into LEGO figures!

Universal Studios Hollywood & Orlando Closed Until May 31st

With both California and Florida under Stay at Home orders, Universal has decided to close their domestic parks through at least the end of May. They had originally been closed through April 19th, but were extended due to the coronavirus situation not slowing down.

Some good news is that stats show that California has started to flatten the curve and computer models moved up its peak to April 14th, which is as soon as next week. Those projection models have the state social distancing until Mid May to complete flatten the curve. That would coincide with the time frame that Knotts and Six Flags would like to open up their parks and give Universal enough room to decide to push up the opening of its Hollywood park should the situation vastly improve by that time.

Here is the official statement from Universal below:

Disney Furloughs Cast Members Starting April 19th

Disney announced today that starting April 19th they will be furloughing cast members of all types including: hourly and salaried cast members in non essential roles. They will be also talking to the unions about those roles as well.

Cast Members with medical will be able to keep it and any cast members in the Disney Aspire program will be able to continue to participate in it. This does not just go for the theme parks, but also the stores, cruise lines, call centers, warehouses and any other Disney units.

A spokesperson from the company released a statement that can be found here:

The COVID-19 pandemic is having a devastating impact on our world with untold suffering and loss, and has required all of us to make sacrifices. Over the last few weeks, mandatory decrees from government officials have shut down a majority of our businesses. Disney employees have received full pay and benefits during this time, and we’ve committed to paying them through April 18, for a total of five additional weeks of compensation. However, with no clear indication of when we can restart our businesses, we’re forced to make the difficult decision to take the next step and furlough employees whose jobs aren’t necessary at this time. The furlough process will begin on April 19, and all impacted workers will remain Disney employees through the duration of the furlough period. They will receive full healthcare benefits, plus the cost of employee and company premiums will be paid by Disney, and those enrolled in Disney Aspire will have continued access to the education program. Additionally, employees with available paid time off can elect to use some or all of it at the start of the furlough period and, once furloughed, they are eligible to receive an extra $600 per week in federal compensation through the $2 trillion economic stimulus bill, as well as state unemployment insurance.”

Disney CEO Bob Chapek also sent out a letter that can be found here:

Dear Cast Members and Imagineers:

As you know, over the past several weeks, COVID-19 has completely reshaped our daily lives as well as our business. A new chapter in the history of our company began when we closed our theme parks, hotels, stores and other operations to help lead the effort to stop the spread of COVID-19. This reality has been sobering to all of us. As difficult as this decision was, we know it was the right one to help protect our Cast Members, our Guests and our communities.

True to the core of Disney, it is heartwarming to see many of you continuing to show your compassion, creativity and support for each other over the past few weeks. The acts of kindness and joy we’ve seen our Cast sharing have been inspirational. We appreciate all you do and know that our Cast Members will always be the heart and soul of Disney. This is why some of the choices we must make are extremely difficult.”

This is an extremely difficult time for everyone and I hope everyone stays healthy and at home so we can all come together and beat this virus!

Disneyland and Walt Disney World Halt Annual Passholder Payments

Disney released some new information regarding annual passholders in their updated travel and information page. The main changes are that if you have already paid your pass in FULL then you will get an extension of your expiration date by however many days the parks are closed. If you do not want an extension you can request a partial refund on however many months you still have left to go on your pass.

If you are doing the MONTHLY PAYMENT PLAN then:

Monthly payments will be waived for the length of the closure.

Payments made between March 14th through April 4th will be refunded.

You will not get an automatic extension on your pass.

You may choose to extend their pass the length of the closure and pay the amount at a later date.

The full statement released by Disney is below:

Photo courtesy of disneyland.com

Disney Purchases Additional Land Near The Magic Kingdom in Walt Disney World

Photo Courtesy of WDWNT

Disney announced today that they purchased an additional 26.2 acres of land near the Magic Kingdom. It is not known what this land will be used for, but there could be a variety of reasons.

One of them could be land protection. Disney most likely has no plans to build on this land anytime soon due to their current financial situation, but land is good forever so they could just keep it and use it for a future use in years to come.

The other reason could be for land conservancy. Due to a deal Disney has with Florida, they have to keep a certain amount of open space. If they decide to build something on land that was previously open space, then they must buy more land or demolish something to get back to that open space goal.

What do you think Disney is planning to do with this newly acquired land? What do you think they should do with it?

BREAKING: Disneyland Park, Disney World and Universal Studios Hollywood Temporarily Closing

This morning California Governor Gavin Newsom announced that he is banning large gatherings of over 250 people in the state, but theme parks, casinos, and movie theaters were exempt. A few hours later, Disney announced that the Disneyland Resort would be closing due to coronavirus concerns for just the fourth time in its history.

A couple of hours later, Universal Studios Hollywood followed suit and announced that it too would be closing its doors from March 14th through the end of the month. This is particular bad for Universal fans as pass member previews were just getting ready to start this Saturday for the new Secret Life of Pets: Off The Leash attraction.

UPDATE: Disney World has now closed effective Sunday March 15th temporarily.

I will update this story as more details become available, but make sure to ALWAYS wash your hands and stay safe and clean!

People Mover at Magic Kingdom Comes to a Halt

The Tomorrowland Transit Authority at the Magic Kingdom has been temporarily closed since 1pm yesterday.

Photo courtesy of wdwnt

This sign was put up by cast members today stating that the attraction will not be reopening today and it is unknown when the attraction will be reopen. It also unknown if this has anything to do with the electrical fire the attraction experienced last year or the incident a few weeks ago where two trains collided.

This has been a very rough week for the Magic Kingdom and Disney World in general as incidents have happened at the Contemporary Resort, Jungle Cruise, and the Haunted Mansion.

France Expansion Added to EPCOT Map

Photo Courtesy of Blog Mickey

An updated map was installed by Disney for the start to EPCOT’s International Flower and Garden Festival. In this new map you can see that the France expansion has been added and that includes the Ratatouille ride as well as the new courtyard and crepery.

This year’s Flower and Garden Festival runs through June 1st and since these new expansions are on the map it is highly likely that the area before the Festival ends. On May 26th Spaceship Earth will be going under an extensive two year refurb and opening the expanded France pavilion could be a great way to supplement that closure.

Are you excited for the new expansion? Let me know in the comments below and follow this blog for constant theme park updates!

Women Jumps From Walt Disney World Resort

Earlier today there was a heavy police presence at Walt Disney World’s Contemporary Resort. It was reported a woman jumped from the window of the resort in an apparent suicide. At around 4pm EST the police were called to the area. There is no more information to provide at this time, but this story will be updated as more news develops. This is the latest in a string of weird incidents at the Walt Disney World Resort including a major breakdown on the Haunted Mansion that occurred last night.

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