As part of updated guidance announced Thursday by Gov. Jay Inslee, museums in King and other counties in Phase 2 of the governor’s reopening plan will be allowed to reopen as long as they follow safety guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
“We continue to balance the need for activities that contribute to physical, mental, and emotional well-being with the steps needed to control the virus,” Inslee said in a news release Thursday. “Our ability to reopen depends on every Washingtonian doing their part to ensure fewer, shorter and safer interactions.”
Museums in counties currently in Phase 2 of the state’s reopening plan, including Pierce and Snohomish in addition to King, will be able to open their doors to the public with several caveats. Patrons over the age of 2 must wear face coverings, capacity must be kept to 25% (with monitoring), frequently touched surfaces must be regularly sanitized, gallery traffic must travel in one direction, and exhibits that utilize touching surfaces must be altered.
The guidelines also extend to museum ticketing, which must be conducted online or over the phone, with timed ticketing or staggered entries to limit capacity. Dining services and gift shops must comply with Phase 2 guidelines for dine-in and retail service. No events will be allowed.
Museums in Phase 3 counties must follow similar guidance, but can operate at 50% capacity; dining and gift shop operations must comply with Phase 3 retail and dine-in food service guidance, and events will be allowed in accordance with Phase 3 participant limits for social gatherings.
The new guidelines for museums were among several updates announced by the governor today. The others apply to bowling, “pick-your-own” farm operations and non-spectator motor sports.