Bronx Zoo, NYC aquarium to open July 24 after virus shutdown

NEW YORK (AP) — The Bronx Zoo and New York City’s aquarium and three other zoos will reopen this month after being closed since March 16 because of the coronavirus outbreak, zoo officials said Thursday.

The Bronx Zoo, the New York Aquarium, the Central Park Zoo, the Prospect Park Zoo and the Queens Zoo will open on July 24, the Wildlife Conservation Society, which runs the facilities, announced.

“We are pleased that the Bronx Zoo, New York Aquarium and our other parks will again serve as retreats where guests can connect with animals and nature when we open on July 24 after being closed for 130 days,” Bronx Zoo director Jim Breheny said.

Visitors will have to buy tickets online in advance, and masks will be required for everyone over 3 years old.

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Zoo officials said the planned openings are timed to coincide with New York City’s entry into Phase 4 of the state’s COVID-19 reopening process during the week of July 20.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said eight people with COVID-19 died in New York hospitals and nursing homes on Wednesday. The number of hospitalizations has declined overall since spiking in mid-April, but 851 individuals with COVID-19 were hospitalized statewide Wednesday. That’s up from 817 Sunday.

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