SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Rules on mask wearing are set to change at San Diego County theme parks starting Tuesday, coinciding with the state's reopening of its economy.
After California drops its reopening tier system on June 15, social distancing and capacity restrictions on businesses will no longer be required. As these rules go away, some face covering changes will also begin.
For San Diego County theme parks, like the San Diego Zoo, SeaWorld San Diego, and Legoland, fully vaccinated visitors will not be required to wear masks.
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All three parks have confirmed to ABC 10News that proof of vaccination will not be required, but they each will require or strongly encourage non-vaccinated guests to wear a face covering. Each theme park added that guests will be reminded of the state's recommendation that non-vaccinated guests wear a mask or obtain a negative COVID-19 test before visiting.
San Diego Zoo told ABC 10News, "guests who are fully vaccinated may remove masks. Guests 2 and older who are not fully vaccinated are required to wear a mask at all times except when actively eating or drinking."
SeaWorld San Diego said it will be "communicating to our guests that the California Department of Public Health recommends that people attending certain public occasions be fully vaccinated, obtain a negative COVID-19 test beforehand, or wear a face covering."
Legoland California said, "while proof of vaccination is not required, all guests need to acknowledge the state’s strong recommendation that they be fully vaccinated or receive a negative COVID-19 test before entering LEGOLAND California Resort when making a reservation. While masks are no longer required for vaccinated guests, we strongly encourage unvaccinated guests to continue to wear one."
Petco Park plans to reopen at full capacity on June 17. In doing so, the ballpark will not require face coverings but several health and safety policies will remain, like thorough cleaning; touchless soap, towel, and sanitizer stations; UV light handrails; and the team's current bag and outside food and drink policies. Petco Park said it will not require proof of vaccination but "strongly recommend that all fans get vaccinated."
In contrast, Birch Aquarium said it will require all staff and guests to wear masks, regardless of vaccination status, saying, "as we head into the next phase of the pandemic, and restrictions begin to lift in our community, the team here at Birch Aquarium is taking things slow in an effort to balance staff and guest safety. We are looking forward to gradually easing back into normal operations over the coming months, but are keeping face covering guidelines — as well as other health and safety measures — in place in order to protect our youngest guests, who are not yet able to be vaccinated."
While not in San Diego County, Disneyland and California Adventure will be a big draw for many San Diegans this summer. The parks said on Monday that fully vaccinated guests will be allowed to visit the park — indoors and outdoors — without wearing a face covering. Non-vaccinated guests will be asked to wear a mask, but the parks will not require proof of vaccination and ask guests to self-attest they have been vaccinated. All guests, regardless of vaccination status, will be required to wear a mask while using bus transportation from parking lots to the parks.