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Fireworks return to Disney parks in latest lifting of rules

Visitors to Walt Disney World and Universal Studios-Orlando were allowed Saturday, May 15, 2021 to remove their masks when they are outdoors except when they are on attractions, in line or riding a tram or other transportation.(Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel via AP, File)

Disney plans to restart fireworks shows at its theme parks in Florida and California in the latest move by the company to ease up on pandemic restrictions implemented last year.

The company said Tuesday that firework shows will resume at the beginning of July at Walt Disney World in Florida and on the Fourth of July at Disneyland in California. The fireworks shows had been put on hold to discourage people from gathering together after the parks reopened following virus-related closures last year.

The decision was the latest move by Disney to lift restrictions implemented last summer to stop the spread of the new coronavirus. Starting Tuesday, face masks were made optional for visitors to Disney World in Florida, provided they are vaccinated, though Disney workers weren't requiring proof of vaccination.

Disney World visitors who were not fully vaccinated still were being required to wear face masks indoors and on all rides and attractions, and all visitors, whether vaccinated or not, were still being required to wear face coverings on buses, monorails and the resort’s aerial gondola.

“As we continue to see more communities adjust and ease COVID-19 guidelines, there’s a new sense of optimism with many positive signs moving forward," Disney said in a blog post. “We’re encouraged by it too, seeing more families making travel plans, friends dining out together more often and more Americans returning to work. And at Disney theme parks, we’re gradually bringing back more of our beloved park experiences."

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