Museums around the Bay Area are either temporarily closing or curtailing some exhibits as fears of the novel coronavirus spreading widely take hold.
The Tactile Dome at the Exploratorium has already been shut down for fairly obvious reasons — it involves a lot of strangers going in and touching things in the dark. Also, as the Business Times reports, the museum has added hand-washing stations to each of the gallery floors and new signage about hygiene.
The Walt Disney Family Museum in the Presidio has also decided, oddly, to close for a deep cleaning until Monday. It then plans to reopen for its regular hours — only to maybe have to get cleaned again as people become more paranoid about community spread of the virus?
In the case of the Children's Discovery Museum in San Jose, the facility is now closed through the weekend, at least, following a possible coronavirus exposure, according to NBC Bay Area. A worker at the museum had contact with a coronavirus patient and is now awaiting results of a test, and now the museum is closed as a precaution.
Meanwhile, as the Chronicle reports, a chocolate festival at the Palace of Fine Arts is moving on as planned this weekend. The event, called Craft Chocolate Experience: San Francisco, features a pair of cacao bean pits that are meant for people to sit in and shoot Instagram photos — and the organizers say they're still keeping those. The event will include extra tongs and gloves now, and attendees will not be allowed to "self-sample" from the chocolate offerings.
This got the Chronicle thinking about another Insta-happy "museum" in town, the Museum of Ice Cream, with its pit of plastic sprinkles for photo purposes. The MOIC tells the paper that it hasn't seen any impact on ticket sales and has no plans to close the museum. MOIC spokesperson Devan Pucci offered a high-toned bit of press-release copy as well: "It is during these challenging times that we remain steadfast in our mission to unite and connect."