Smithsonian reopening three museums
The Smithsonian Institution announced on Monday that it is reopening three more museums after dealing with temporary closures due to coronavirus-related staffing shortages.
The organization said the Anacostia Community Museum, National Postal Museum and the National Air and Space Museum will all reopen this month; the Anacostia Community Museum will reopen March 9 and the National Postal Museum will reopen March 11.
The National Air and Space Museum will also reopen on March 11, but will close again on March 28 for renovations through the fall.
The organization noted that the National Zoo and its museums will still be operating under amended scheduling.
The announcement comes against a backdrop of declining COVID-19 cases in Washington, D.C., and the city will lift its mask mandate for businesses on Tuesday.
Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) announced last month that the district would be getting rid of its mask and vaccine mandates, noting a steep drop of COVID-19 cases following the omicron wave.
“COVID is not as deadly as it was,” Bowser said at time, while adding, “Getting vaccinated and boosted, we can’t emphasize enough.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also changed its guidance last week, easing masking guidance in areas at relatively low COVID-19 risk, meaning some 70 percent of Americans are no longer required to mask up in public.