WINTER HAVEN, Fla. – After being closed since mid-March in response to the coronavirus pandemic, Legoland Florida is looking to reopen to the public by June 1.
What You Need To Know
- Legoland Florida gets local approval to reopen
- Theme park would like to reopen by June 1
- Plan includes dozens of new safety and health measures
- The plan will need approval from the state
The theme park's plan received endorsements from the City of Winter Haven and Polk County. However, it will still need to get approval from the state.
Prior to getting local approval, Legoland general manager Rex Jackson appeared in a virtual Winter Haven City Commission workshop meeting on Wednesday to outline what measures the park plans to implement such as social distancing, increased sanitation and capacity limits.
Jackson said capacity would be limited to less than 50 percent for both the theme park and water park when they reopen. Visitors will be encouraged to book ahead online. Jackson said this would help the park manage capacity as well as reduce contact points between visitors and employees at the ticket windows.
Visitors would be required to undergo temperature checks, and anyone with a temperature of 100.4 degrees or higher would not be allowed to enter Legoland. Additionally, anyone in that person’s party would also not be allowed to enter.
Face coverings will be “highly recommended” for visitors age 3 and older but not required. Those without a mask will be provided a complimentary one, according to Jackson.
As for employees, they will be required to wear face coverings, and, in some cases, gloves or face shields, depending on their role. Temperature checks will also be conducted on employees.
Jackson also said Legoland will leave empty seats on rides to promote social distancing. Seating will also be reconfigured for live shows to keep visitors apart.
Some “Lego brick pits” will still be available for visitors and they will be frequently cleaned throughout the day.
As part of the plan, plastic shields will be installed at registers and service counters to protect employees and visitors. Also, buffet-style dining will be changed to table service. And self-service soda machines will be manned by employees. Capacity limits will also be placed on restaurants, shops and other indoor facilities.
In addition to increased cleaning procedures, hand sanitizer dispensers will be placed throughout Legoland, including at ride entrances and exits.
Jackson said for the measures to work, Legoland will need compliance from visitors.
“We are taking a lot of these measures on our own, but we will need the help of our guests to follow many of the guidance and restrictions that we are putting in place,” Jackson said.
Legoland also plans to open its new pirate-themed hotel next month. The five-story Pirate Island Hotel is set to open June 1. It was initially scheduled to open in April but the coronavirus-related closure of the resort caused Legoland to delay the opening.
Last week, Gov. Ron DeSantis gave theme parks the green light to begin submitting their reopening plans to the state. Under an executive order, the plans need to include a proposed reopening date, safety measures for staff and visitors, and an endorsement letter from an official in their municipality.
Other theme parks in Florida are expected to begin submitting their reopening plans soon. Universal Orlando will be the first major park to present its plans to the Orange County Economic Recovery Task Force on Thursday.
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