(ORLANDO, Fla.) — Mickey Mouse will soon be able to hug again.
Because of the pandemic, U.S. Disney Parks’ costumed characters have been keeping their distance for almost two years. They haven’t been able to give hugs, sign autographs or interact up close with fans.
In a matter of weeks, this will change as the parks introduce traditional greetings to their characters. In a blog posting, Disney announced that interaction with costumed characters and visitors will again be permitted at Disneyland California and Walt Disney World Florida.
Coronavirus, which struck spring 2020 in the US, caused parks to close temporarily. The parks were reopened last summer but costumed characters couldn’t be seen in parades or waving at visitors. Although the parks permitted costumed characters to return in fall for individual meet-ups, visitors were not allowed to take their photographs or greet them.
“Very soon, you will once again be able to hug Mickey Mouse, get an autograph from Mulan, and share a laugh with Goofy,” the post said. “We know many of you have missed these special moments, and your Disney character friends have missed you, too!”
The company stated that not all traditional places for greetings with characters will be available immediately. These locations will be opened in stages.
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