California trade association urges governor to allow theme parks to open

Posted Tuesday, September 15, 2020 9:58 AM | Contributed by Jeff

The California Attractions and Parks Association representing Disney, Universal, Six Flags, SeaWorld, Knott’s and Legoland has called on Gov. Gavin Newsom to reopen California theme parks on the six-month anniversary of the coronavirus closure of Disneyland.

Read more from The Orange County Register.

Tuesday, September 15, 2020 11:48 AM
eightdotthree's avatar

I don't know whose making these decisions in California. It seems from the outside that they are making decisions that "feel" right rather than basing them on science.

Last edited by eightdotthree, Tuesday, September 15, 2020 11:49 AM
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Tuesday, September 15, 2020 11:49 AM
Jeff's avatar

"Science doesn't agree with you!"


Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Music: The Modern Gen-X - Video

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Friday, September 18, 2020 4:22 AM

eightdotthree said:

I don't know whose making these decisions in California. It seems from the outside that they are making decisions that "feel" right rather than basing them on science.


Exactly this. Minnesota has a similar thing happening. Our governor continues to wield emergency powers, and he alone has been making decisions based on feelings and not science. The initial two week shutdown to flatten the curve was warranted. But as the scientific data was updated, he did not follow the science. With the low risk of transmission in outdoor settings, Valleyfair should have been allowed to open by the beginning of July at the latest.


CoastingInMN

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Friday, September 18, 2020 7:10 AM

To some extent I feel the same way about Illinois. If zoos can open why can't Great America? Better yet, if the water park side of Great America can open why not the ride side? Other parks in the region and other parks in the chain have demonstrated that they can safely open up with a reduced capacity and protocols in place.

However, I will give credit where credit is due. Illinois' positivity rate has plummeted from a high of 24% on April 5th to an average in the 3-4% range since June 16th. We are now testing around 45K a day.

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Friday, September 18, 2020 8:59 AM

In regards to parks, I think it has been a "damned if you do damned if you don't" scenario. From what we know, the states that allowed parks to open did not have any issues or outbreaks traced to the parks. But even if I don't agree with it, any state was absolutely rational and within their rights to say "no, not this year" and I don't fault either decision.

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Friday, September 18, 2020 9:00 AM

But as far as Illinois goes, I do agree. I don't see a day at the zoo or a day at a waterpark as any more safe than a day of roller coasters

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Friday, September 18, 2020 4:09 PM
ApolloAndy's avatar

I'm not saying I disagree, but I'm curious what the "science" being referred to in this thread is. Are we saying that gatherings of multiple thousands of people outdoors while masked and "distanced" are not a risk? Or that they're "about the same risk as a lot of other permitted activities?" I see a lot of ways to distinguish between theme parks, zoos, and water parks (attendance and average travel distance, especially for Disneyland) and I don't fault the public health officials for splitting hairs and/or erring on the side of caution. A bright line has to be drawn somewhere and it's exact location might seem arbitrary (Discovery Kingdom is currently open on the animal side but not the ride side - that seems weird) but I agree with the general area the line is being drawn at.

Last edited by ApolloAndy, Friday, September 18, 2020 4:10 PM

Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

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Friday, September 18, 2020 5:21 PM

I am saying that going to a zoo, waterpark, or dry ride amusement park would all be about the same risk, assuming they all have a similar capacity cap and enforcement on masks and distancing. There is a risk. But I don't see enough of a difference where one should open if another does not.

Take, for example, the current policy in California where the two Disneyland parks are closed but Downtown Disney is open. As long as the distancing and masks are happening, I don't see how sitting in a Matterhorn seat or getting a corn dog on Main Street is any more risky than shopping or dining in Downtown Disney.

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Friday, September 18, 2020 7:29 PM

In the case of Disneyland I completely understand the issue with travel. Outside of Cedar Point do regional parks really have that concern?

Inherently there is going to be some gray area. Maybe this speaks to a larger issue but I'm still disheartened by the complete lack of consistency in reopening plans by states that share a border.

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Saturday, September 19, 2020 12:06 AM

There is other weirdness, too. I really lost a lot of respect for what Ohio was doing with reopening when the Governor allowed indoor FECs (which I still think is a little risky) but not outdoor amusement parks and water parks. The decision making violates everything I understand about the risk continuum of this virus. Decisions and guidelines now seem incredibly arbitrary with no real consideration given to any real world risk management. The Columbus Crew can cram 1,500 spectators into 20,000-seat Mapfre Stadium. But that’s also the cap for the 67,000-seat FirstEnergy Stadium, except for last night’s game where they had a variance to have 3,000 people. If it’s an acceptable risk to put 3,000 spectators in that stadium for one game, why not for all of them? Oh, and that same 1,500-person cap also applies to 110,000-seat Ohio Stadium...where they even have the option of cherry-picking game attendees from students who have passed a COVID-19 test, since they’re testing many of them frequently anyway.
Ohio has mostly been not too bad until recently. But what about states where stores are required to limit products sold; where casinos can open but amusement parks can not; where amusement parks have to stay closed but zoos can open.
I’ve been complaining all along (I mean, for decades now, not just the last six months) that Americans in general suck at risk management. It’s becoming clear that our elected leaders, even when given good information, are just as bad at it as everyone else, if not worse because of the consequences of making the wrong mistake.

—Dave Althoff, Jr.


    /X\        _      *** Respect rides. They do not respect you. ***
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Saturday, September 19, 2020 10:51 AM

Since you mentioned Big 10 Football:

The president of the University of Michigan has an M.D. degree, and has taught immunology courses. The president of Michigan State University also has an M.D., and did a fellowship in infectious disease.

This past week, the Bit 10 has decided to allow the football teams to play (without fans in the stadium), despite Michigan having limited in person classes, and Michigan State having no in person classes.

Last edited by 0g, Saturday, September 19, 2020 10:51 AM
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Saturday, September 19, 2020 11:48 AM

Decisions are made by politicians and are thus political.

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Saturday, September 19, 2020 12:02 PM
ApolloAndy's avatar

BrettV said:

Take, for example, the current policy in California where the two Disneyland parks are closed but Downtown Disney is open. As long as the distancing and masks are happening, I don't see how sitting in a Matterhorn seat or getting a corn dog on Main Street is any more risky than shopping or dining in Downtown Disney.


The normal capacity for the DLR parks is well over 100,000.  The normal capacity for Downtown Disney is *maybe* a few thousand. And nobody is travelling from around the state and country to visit Downtown Disney. Your local zoo probably has a capacity around 10,000 and probably serves the immediate metro area. While there might not be a difference in individual transmission risk between the activities, there's a huge difference in broader population and behavioral factors.


Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

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Sunday, September 20, 2020 10:17 AM

RideMan said:

It’s becoming clear that our elected leaders, even when given good information, are just as bad at it as everyone else, if not worse because of the consequences of making the wrong mistake.

It might help to have a head of the Dept of Health - if only to give the governor the ability to say "I'm relying on the judgment of Dr. Whoozit", and shield him from some of the political pressure. (I mean, I get it, it's not fun to be Dr Whoozit in that position, but the legitimate criticism is part of the job. Getting death threats, however, is not.) He may have had one when the FEC decision was made; I don't know when that was.

The decision to play football, especially college football, is plainly just prioritizing money over safety. Your opinions of the appropriateness of that may vary. As for putting fans in the stadium, my sense of it is kind of the same as amusement parks and zoos or even planes - the risks aren't the activity itself, they're the stuff around the activities: enclosed restrooms, restaurants, gift shops, lines, etc. Probably a bit less of that in an open-air stadium than some of the other venues.

(In NY, our disconnect is that casinos are open but outdoor amusement parks are not.)

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Sunday, September 20, 2020 6:14 PM
ApolloAndy's avatar

It would also help if the whole thing wasn't a political sh!tsh*w. Like, if the governors could just listen to their experts and establish protocols without having half their citizenry calling the whole thing a hoax or a conspiracy or the flu or a violation of their freedom.

Last edited by ApolloAndy, Sunday, September 20, 2020 6:14 PM

Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

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Sunday, September 20, 2020 7:46 PM

Well yeah, that too.

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Sunday, September 20, 2020 9:25 PM

I wonder where they got that idea...

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