As Boston prepares to enter Phase 3 of reopening on Monday, two of the city’s most popular attractions are getting ready to welcome back visitors.
NBC10 Boston got a first look inside the preparations at the Boston Children’s Museum and New England Aquarium.
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“I am so excited to welcome back our visitors,” New England Aquarium President and CEO Vikki Spruill said.
The aquarium has been closed since mid-March, but when it does open its doors it will look different inside. There are new social distancing signs that greet visitors in the lobby. Masks are required for guests and employees.
“More hand sanitizing stations, more cleaning protocols and less touching of everything,” Spruill said.
During a normal summer season, the aquarium welcomes about 7,000 people a day but this year it will be capped at about 1,600.
“We’ll have timed ticketing and you’ll be reserving a special slot,” Spruill said.
Visitors will have to reserve a ticket online, which will include a COVID-19 screening process.
A similar procedure will be in place at the Boston Children’s Museum.
“I’m not sure I’ve ever been so excited in my life than to see the kids arrive back at the Children’s Museum,” Boston Children’s Museum President and CEO Carol Charnow said.
Social distancing markers are being placed on the floor and there are now self-cleaning elevator buttons.
One of the biggest changes inside will be the continuous cleaning of all of the loose items like golf balls, trucks and blocks. And the museum will be limiting the number of guests inside.
“We’re going to have two sessions each day and in between we will have an hour and a half to deep clean the museum,” Charnow said.
Both institutions had to furlough workers, but each expect to bring them back once they reopen.
“We are ready to reopen,” Spruill said. “We have been planning for this.”
The New England Aquarium announced Tuesday that it will open to the public on July 16. The exact opening date for the Children's Museum has not yet been announced.