Aquarium of Niagara and Buffalo Museum of Science among places set for Phase 4

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BUFFALO N.Y. (WIVB) – Government Leaders have made adjustments now as to which businesses can reopen when Phase Four begins. We now know Phase Four no longer included malls, gyms or movie theaters. News 4 caught up with a few businesses that are getting the green light.

“It’s hard not to breathe a little sigh of relief to receive the guidance from New York state last night,” said Gary Siddal, who’s the Aquarium of Niagara executive director.

The Aquarium of Niagara is one of the places the state gave the OK to open back up during Phase Four. Government leaders say outdoor and lower risk indoor activities such as aquariums are good to go but only at 25 percent capacity.

“A lot of the guidance, our plan has actually gone above and beyond with so we’ve been putting things in place for the last several weeks, even months to prepare for reopening,” Siddal said. “So having our plan in place actually made us feel really good as we compared that to what the state was asking us to do.”

Aquarium guests must wear a face covering. They also must stay with the groups they came with as they move through the exhibit and follow the one way foot traffic signs. The aquarium will keep interactive exhibits closed and will open first to members and essential workers. Then to general admission by the 4th of July weekend.

“A lot has been done in preparation for our reopening and hopefully that gives everyone a really strong sense of safety and security as they come back to the aquarium,” Siddall said.

The Buffalo Museum of Science is also approved to reopen in the next phase.

“We’re very excited. We’ve been looking forward to this time for months and months it feels like,” said Buffalo Museum of Science president and CEO Marisa Wigglesworth.

Much like the Aquarium of Niagara, interactive exhibits at the Science Museum will be closed. The museum will open its second floor up first, which houses four science studios and the U.S. Premiere of Golden Mummies of Egypt. They will be open only on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

“We have a number of plans in place, we’ve got wonderful exhibits, we’ve got talented staff and we’re ready to see our nieghbors come through the doors,” Wigglesworth said.

Both the Science Museum and the Aquarium require guests to buy tickets online or over the phone first.

Sarah Minkewicz is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here.

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