Orange County Convention Center receives major health safety accreditation ahead of reopening

The Orange County Convention Center has received a stamp of approval for reopening to the public, and next week, it will be put to the test.

“It’s a great test for us,” said Mark Tester, Executive Director, Orange County Convention Center.

The facility is preparing for its biggest event since the Coronavirus shutdown. Some 12,000 people attending an amateur volleyball tournament next week.

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“No spectators allowed, just coaches and chaperones and they’ll be playing in waves and also teams will be coming and going throughout the day, so they’ll be arriving on one side of the building and leaving through another, they’ll be doing temperature checks, wiping down the courts and balls in between,” said Tester.

Tester is confident the facility has the protocols in place to ensure guests will have a safe experience. In fact, the facility just receiving the Global Biorisk Advisory Council Star Accreditation.

“It’s the gold seal of approval, it says that you are following everything from beginning to end, not only that you’re cleaning all high touch surfaces and using the right chemicals and right machinery but you’re also following things all the way through to waste management, inventory, disease prevention, going over and auditing and making sure those things continue,” said Tester.

Only two convention centers in the United States have the stamp of approval. The hope is that the accreditation will help the venue attract more events.

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“What our customers need right now, is a feeling of assurance that the venues are doing everything they can and then they can promote to attendees and make them feel comfortable,” said Tester.

And Orange County is in the spotlight.

“A lot of eyes are on us, we’re the first big facility in the country to be back with an event and hopefully we can promote and show, just exactly how you do it and hope others follow,” said Tester.

All ballrooms and meeting rooms will be capped at 50 percent. Masks will be required in the lobbies and outdoor areas on the property.