Maui Ocean Center to reopen after 10-month virus closure

Maui Ocean Center to reopen after 10-month virus closure
Maui Ocean Center (Source: Hawaii News Now/file)

WAILUKU, Hawaii (AP) — The Maui Ocean Center will reopen on Friday after a 10-month closure due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The ocean center said Tuesday that it would open in three phases.

Phase one begins Friday and permits only ocean center members and Na Hoa Kai annual pass holders access. Members will receive free admission but must make reservations online.

Phase two will allow all Maui, Lanai and Molokai residents to visit for free Saturdays and Sundays.

Phase three will begin next Monday with a general admission reopening.

“We are delighted to welcome back our members and Maui Nui community this weekend, and I look forward to personally welcoming you,” said General Manager Tapani Vuori in a statement. “Along with taking great care of our marine life during our closure, we took the opportunity to freshen up all areas of the park.”

The park will now be open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and all visitors must make reservations online. No tickets or reservations will be issued at the gate.

Marketing Director Toni Rojas told the Maui News that the center had employed more than 100 people prior to the pandemic but has “significantly” fewer now. She declined to elaborate.

Guests and employees must undergo temperature checks at the gate, wear masks at all times and maintain social distancing.

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