The staff at Patriots Point Naval and Maritime Museum is installing ultraviolet (UV) light air purifiers in all of the air conditioning units aboard the aircraft carrier USS Yorktown in preparation of a tentative reopening on Friday, May 15th. UV light deactivates airborne or surface contaminants like mold, bacteria and viruses. The museum has also installed more than a dozen new hand sanitizing stations.
While closed because of COVID-19, the Patriots Point staff has been hard at work stripping and repainting tour routes, ladder wells and open spaces aboard the museum’s flagship. The process includes blowing dirt and dust from the overhead areas, scraping off old paint, and then recoating the ship bulkheads and decks using the original U.S. Navy soft white, gray or green colors.
The 28 aircraft featured at the museum will all be pressure-washed by May 15, and several necessary repairs completed. The five self-guided tour routes aboard the USS Yorktown have been reconfigured and consolidated to four easy to follow routes that incorporate new signage featuring Patriots Point’s mascot Scrappy as the guide. The handicap entrance to the USS Yorktown has also been renovated. The old wood paneling just inside the gangway has been replaced, new ceiling tile has been installed and signage improved.
“Covid-19 has affected us all in negative ways, but the bright spot for us is the time we’ve had to make our museum better,” said museum Executive Director Larry Murray. “In our museum’s 44 years of existence, we’ve never had a month where our operations team could work on our vessels and exhibits without interruption. While serving the public, we can’t close the hangar deck or a tour route to perform extensive renovations. We’ve been able to do that the last few weeks. When we reopen, the USS Yorktown will look like the Navy has been back aboard.”
On May 15th, visitors will only have access to self-guided tour routes. Educational programs and guided tours will not be sold. Overnight camping operations remain suspended until further notice.
Visit www.patriotspoint.org for more information.