Monday 23 March
As of 3pm today, the Museum is closed until further notice. We will advise of any changes or new information as it comes to hand.
Please look after your people and stay safe.
Sunday 22 March
We are open, and have implemented a visitor register so we can easily contact our visitors if we need to. Details will be kept strictly private and destroyed after a month. There are forms at the cafe and at the main entrance.
We have reduced our planetarium screening schedule so we have time to clean between shows and so there is room for people to manage the physical distancing recommendations.
If you are looking for things to do while in self-isolation, our photography competition is still running and open until 30 June. It could provide you with a reason to get outside if you're feeling cooped up. https://otagomuseum.nz/owpc
Saturday 21 March
With the Government announcement today that they have moved the COVID-19 situation to a level 2 alert, we encourage all our visitors to remain informed about how this affects their own situation. The alert system is available at https://covid19.govt.nz/assets/COVID_Alert-levels_v2.pdf and there is a wide range of current information on this website - https://covid19.govt.nz/.
We are intending to remain open until the situation changes. This is in line with the DCC's approach for museums and galleries.. The decision-making framework that the DCC is using is available at https://www.dunedin.govt.nz/news-and-events/public-notices/COVID-19-information/council-facility-closure-framework.
We are looking after our vulnerable staff and ensuring those who can are enabled to work from home.
Friday 20 March
We are aware that some of New Zealand’s museums have announced their closures today in response to the state of the COVID-19 outbreak in their communities. We continue to follow Ministry of Health and Dunedin City Council advice and are remaining open for now. We will continue to monitor the needs of our community and will respond accordingly.
Please do continue to visit us for now.
Yesterday, the Government announced a requirement that groups be smaller than 100 people – in our context, that means 100 people in one of our galleries or the café at any given time. Tables have been removed from the café so we have fewer than 100 seats in there and there is more space around them. Also, we are confident it’s unlikely we’ll have more than 100 people in any gallery at a time but will be actively monitoring this.
We are starting to cancel public events and programmes – these are being marked cancelled on our website so please check here. Our April Explorers’ Club holiday programme has been cancelled.
We have increased cleaning schedules, and have removed hand dryers in restrooms, replaced with hand towels.
Staff are actively checking and cleaning high touch interactives in Tūhura Otago Community Trust Science Centre. Our planetarium shows are running as scheduled for now although we are now screening Amazing Universe as a 2D show so we don’t have to handle 3D glasses.
We are also very excited about working on a range of digital content to share with the public over the next weeks – this is Otago’s museum and we want to make sure our community can access our collections and experiences as much as we can manage.
Monday 16 March
Otago Museum is currently open to the public for business as usual, but are monitoring the situation as it changes and following Government advice which is based on the most up-to-date science and information.
We have increased our daily cleaning schedule, especially in high traffic areas, using World Health Organisation recommended products for viral management. We have bathrooms on every level for hand-washing.
Please be aware of the potential for community spread, and stay at home if you are feeling unwell. For more information please visit the Ministry of Health website.
If events are cancelled due to the outbreak, this will be posted here, so please check back often for updates.