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The California Fires: What's Happening Now

John Deiner

San Diego is trying to return to some semblance of normalcy, at least for tourists. While fires are still raging north, east and south of the city, the Santa Ana winds were expected to end today and more humid ocean air is supposed to start moving in. The mayor recently announced that all residential areas of the city have reopened to residents.

Air quality, however, isn't going to get better overnight. Don't expect good air for at least several more days.
While some tourism destinations remain closed, many have reopened. The San Diego Convention & Visitors Bureau, in an open letter to meeting planners, said: "The City's downtown core, hotels, restaurants, San Diego Zoo, Port and waterfront, along with the airport, are open for business and not directly impacted by fires. A few attractions have closed for a day or two, but with the improving weather conditions and fire situation, all major attractions should be open by this Friday."

The bureau's letter also noted that evacuees are leaving area hotels and returning to their homes. "This development is relieving the unanticipated demand on the local lodging sector in San Diego and our hotel community is looking forward to welcoming visitors and meetings to our destinations." (Call your hotel to make sure). For the latest, go to www.sandiego.org.

Tourist attractions that remain closed on Thursday include San Diego Wild Animal Park, SeaWorld (may reopen Friday), Legoland (scheduled to reopen Friday), the Birch Aquarium, Museum of Contemporary Art, Cabrillo National Monument and Seal Tours (scheduled to restart Friday). Harbor Excursions reopened today and Old Town Trolley Tours is now operating on a limited schedule.

Many Balboa Park attractions have reopened, including the Air & Space Museum and the Old Globe. The Japanese Friendship Garden and the Ruben H. Fleet Science Center remain closed today.

Many Indian casinos, which are located in rural areas outside downtown San Diego, remain closed, including Barona, Harrah's, Golden Acorn, Santa Ysabel, Viejas Outlet and Valley View. Major roads, including Interstate 5 are now open, although road closures continue to affect the region. Amtrak has restarted service between San Diego and points north.

By John Deiner |  October 25, 2007; 2:29 PM ET  | Category:  Carol Sottili
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