Looks Like Disneyland Has Taken Another Step Towards Full Reopening

Downtown Disney

Back in June Disneyland Resort hoped to be open by mid-July, but unfortunately, today only the Downtown Disney shopping and dining district is currently open to guests, with all hotels and theme parks still closed. There hasn't even been so much as a rumor regarding when the state of California might be willing to let theme parks reopen, but following a reclassification of the status of Orange County, where Disneyland Resort is located, the resort has now taken a small, but significant, step forward, as the restaurants at Downtown Disney have begun to offer some indoor dining.

California is using a four-tier classification to determine what business can be open in the different counties in California. While most of California counties, especially the most populous ones, are still in the "widespread" category, meaning they are seeing a significant number of new cases, Orange County in Southern California was recently lowered into the "substantial" category, which means that, among other things, restaurants can now offer indoor dining of up to 25% of normal capacity. The Disneyland Resort website, now reflects that its locations may be offering "limited indoor seating."

This is a small, but certainly necessary, step toward Disneyland Resort reopening. There are certainly many different factors that will need to come together before Disneyland is able to reopen, but one of them is that it needs to make financial sense for Disney to do so. Even if California gave the all-clear now, which Disneyland is apparently ready for, if table service restaurants weren't able to seat enough people to make them worth opening, they wouldn't open at all. Disneyland's theme parks will certainly open to limited capacity, but whatever that fraction that's allowed is, it needs to be large enough to make it financially worth opening in the first place.

Of course, the state of Orange County alone probably won't determine what happens to Disneyland Resort on its own. Certainly, when Disneyland reopens people will be coming from all over to visit, and that will need to be taken into account. Even if Orange County continues to improve, if the rest of California does not, it may result in Disneyland remaining closed longer. Still, the reverse is also true, so Orange County's improvement is a step in the right direction.

While Walt Disney World has struggled somewhat since reopening, Disneyland Resort may not have that problem. While there are certainly a lot of people who might not be ready to take vacations there as soon as the parks reopen, the local population surrounding Disneyland is much denser and there are a lot of Annual Passport holders who will likely to be willing to visit the socially distanced park. Of course, the fact that more people might be willing to visit Disneyland, and that Disneyland Resort itself is much smaller than Walt Disney World, makes handling the crowds there that much more important.

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian, Dirk began writing for CinemaBlend as a freelancer in 2015 before joining the site full-time in 2018. He has previously held positions as a Staff Writer and Games Editor, but has more recently transformed his true passion into his job as the head of the site's Theme Park section. He has previously done freelance work for various gaming and technology sites. Prior to starting his second career as a writer he worked for 12 years in sales for various companies within the consumer electronics industry. He has a degree in political science from the University of California, Davis.  Is an armchair Imagineer, Epcot Stan, Future Club 33 Member.