USS Iowa in San Pedro welcomes first tourists in nearly 3 months amid coronavirus outbreak – Daily News

on Jun1
by | Comments Off on USS Iowa in San Pedro welcomes first tourists in nearly 3 months amid coronavirus outbreak – Daily News |

For the first time in nearly three months, the Battleship Iowa ushered visitors onto its deck for a tour.

The start of tours took longer than expected — when it was announced on March 13 that the ship would close, some hoped it might be able to reopen by the end of the month.

Beginning Saturday, May 29, the ship reopened to offer limited, fresh-air tours that comply with public health guidelines. That means making advance reservations and groups limited to six at a time. There also are private guided tours available, but public health guidelines, including face coverings, must be observed at all times.

In March, Jonathan Williams, president and CEO, announced the full closure, saying it was in the best interest of the safety of guests and crew.

The financial impacts were devastating. The nonprofit museum ship saw a 79% drop in revenue.

The limited tours opening now — which will be offered between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. daily — won’t be enough for the ship to regroup quickly. In addition to the loss in ticket sales, there were numerous special events that had to be cancelled.

Non-essential staff was furloughed, business travel ended and there were cutbacks to all non-essential expenses.

“Opening our outdoor decks for visitation now is a major step in our continued transition as a community driven national museum,” Williams said.



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