Cities around Southern California are bracing for major changes after officials recommended the cancellation of any gatherings of more than 250 people at least through the end of March. The guidelines issued by the California Department of Public Health and by the office of Gov. Gavin Newsom appear to be recommendations and not a mandate at this time. But Newsom said following the recommendations can help save lives and slow the spread of the disease.
From Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles to Disneyland in Anaheim, smaller crowds are expected - especially after major changes were announced in the sports world, like the NBA suspending the season until further notice after a player on the Utah Jazz preliminarily tested positive for coronavirus.
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Although the Los Angeles Kings played their game against the Ottawa Senators Wednesday night with fans in the stands at Staples Center, the NHL is expected to make an announcement Thursday about its plans for the rest of the season.
The City of Anaheim was among the first local governments to respond to the state's recommendation, saying they expect to see changes in the coming days based on the governor's guidelines.
Those changes would cover several aspects of tourism, including the Anaheim Convention Center, and presumably Disneyland as well as the Honda Center and Angel Stadium of Anaheim. However, officials made clear the guidelines do not reflect any unique concerns about the city as they say their venues have already been following the best public health practices amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
MLB games could also be impacted, with the Los Angeles Dodgers scheduled to host the San Francisco Giants to open their season later this month. The World Series favorites, along with the rest of the league, may be forced to postpone those games or play without fans in attendance.
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Team officials told ESPN that they hope MLB can settle on a plan without days so that teams can inform players and staff about how to proceed.
Los Angeles Football Club has a game slated for Thursday night at the Banc of California Stadium. No official statements have been issued by the team or MLS.
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