Local News

Museums prepare for county’s move into yellow tier

SAN DIEGO – Businesses are preparing to welcome more customers inside as San Diego County drops to the yellow tier Wednesday. Some industries will even be able to lift capacity restrictions such as aquariums, zoos, and museums. 

Many large museums in San Diego told FOX 5 that the lesser restrictions in the yellow tier won’t affect them much. But for smaller museums, it will help boost tours, including those at the African Diaspora Museum and Research Center in Old Town. 

The museum is one of few in the country that houses extensive historical information of global African culture. 

The museum has been around for 22 years, so for Professor Chuck Ambers it was quite a shock to close down for 15 months during the pandemic. 

He said the museum reopened to the public about two months ago, and people are chomping at the bit to get a look inside. 

Fortunately, small research tours and other educational dealings helped keep the museum stay alive during COVID. However, he said tours still make up only 25 percent of revenue.

The museum will be able to increase tours as capacity restrictions lift. 

“We have such a small space inside, we have four rooms, that I can put half a dozen people in each room with a tour guide and we can rotate,” Ambers said. 

Looking to summer, Amber’s only expects business to pick up as tourists flock to Old Town. 

“As the buses come in, we will have larger tours, we just have to be as careful as we can,” he said. 

After the state reopens, he is also planning to open six days a week. Safety measures will still be in place.