Along with almost everything else around the world, the White House stopped offering public tours in March, due to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus. However, they’ve just announced they are going to resume them later this months, albeit with some changes.
Tours will begin on Saturday, September 12th. However, “in order to ensure the safety and health of all visitors, there have been new policies implemented that align with the guidance issued by Federal, State, and local officials,” the first lady’s office said in a statement.
- Tours will be hosted two days a week, on Fridays and Saturdays, from 8:00AM to 11:00AM (it had previously been Tue/Wed/Thur 7:30a-11:30a and Sat/Sun 7:30a-1:30p).
- The number of guests is limited to 18% of normal capacity.
- All guests (ages 2 years and over) are required to wear a face-covering and practice social distancing during their visit to the White House complex.
- Social distancing dots will be placed on the ground for guests during the check-in process.
- National Park Service, U.S. Secret Service Officers, and Visitors Office staff working the tour route will wear face coverings, gloves, and encourage social distancing when engaging with guests on the complex.
- Hand sanitizer will be available in multiple locations.
You must request up to 3 months in advance to schedule a tour, as all potential tour participants are vetted. U.S. citizens can contact their congressperson via Congress.gov for their request and non-U.S. citizens can contact their embassy in Washington D.C. Tours are scheduled on a first-come, first-served basis.
Although what was available to see has varied over the years, the White House has offered tours, on and off, since at least the 1920s. The “pause” on the tours this year has been just the latest; they were also suspended during World War II, during a major renovation in the late 1940s and early 1950s, following the assassination of John F. Kennedy, and in the wake of the September 11th attacks.
Feature Photo: The White House
#stayhealthy #staysafe #washyourhands #wearamask
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary