#Art + Culture

Cheers & Tears: Emotions Run High As Disneyland Opens Its Gates To Visitors After A Year

disneyland reopens

Disneyland reopens in California, inviting visitors back into what is deemed the happiest place on earth after a year of pandemic gloom. Life returned to (almost) normal at the theme park Friday, as its once usual stream of Mickey ears-donning children and adults alike returned to enjoying Disney’s animated attractions with cheers and applause.

Robert Iger, executive Chairman at Walt Disney, welcomed visitors back to the joyland. “A truly happy day at the happiest place on earth, @Disneyland! To our cast and our guests, welcome back!” he wrote on Twitter. 

At present, Disneyland and Disney California Adventure Park have reportedly only opened to Californians and that too at limited capacity. Wait time for rides measured between 5 to 45 minutes, as per USA Todayfar lesser than Disneyland’s pre-pandemic queues that extended waiting for hours together.

Disney cast members are ensuring that visitors adhere to COVID-19 protocols of distancing and masking.

Disneyland Reopens: ‘Happiest Place On Earth’ Brings Back The Magic

The Anaheim theme park in California is the first, original Disneyland set up in 1955 – the only one out of the worldwide chain to have been created under the supervision of Walt Disney, the man behind the brand.

One of the most longstanding American symbols, Disneyland had shuttered its gates for an unprecedented 412 days in view of rising coronavirus cases in California. The healthcare system in the state was overwhelmed in 2020 with places like Los Angeles becoming coronavirus hotspots. Reports suggest California now has one of the lowest rates of COVID-19 across the US.

As Californians ready to return to Disney magic, here is a glimpse of the social media mood on the occasion of the big reopening day:

Image Credit: Glen Scarborough