Coronavirus leads to virtual party entertainment for kids

COVID-19 is making kids party costume characters go online

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It’s hard to be a party prince or princess in the midst of the global coronavirus pandemic.

The American Immersion Theatre + Princess Party told TMZ its company has lost about $200,000 from March and April cancelations as a result of quarantine and social distancing measures. As the pandemic drags on in the U.S., the company estimates it will lose $1 million in gross income.

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These warmer months are typically a high season for the American Immersion Theatre’s 2,000 actors who operate in 27 different cities, however, with everyone remaining isolated, the company has no live gigs booked for the spring or summer.

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In the meantime, actors at the American Immersion Theatre are donning costumes for virtual gigs. The theater told TMZ it receives about seven virtual bookings a day where kids get to interact with their favorite TV or movie character, whether it be Disney princess or superhero. But, these modest bookings don’t compare to the 150 events that are being canceled on a weekly basis, according to the American Immersion Theatre.

The company shared that it is hopeful that business will pick up again in June.

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Similarly, the Los Angeles Princess Company is offering personalized 30-minute FaceTime call sessions with its princesses to try and make up for the six to 10 weekend parties it is missing out on. The company told TMZ it is losing between $500 and $1,000 each week from cancellations and has no parties lined up for the next several weeks.

Party-planning service Amazing Kids Parties is also offering virtual celebrations, including party games and character meet-and-greets. For the latter, kids can get on a 10-minute video call and see a live performance that utilizes either song, dance, storytelling or role-play for as low as $30.

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As of March 14, If You Can Dream NYC was allowing clients to reschedule events or arrange one-on-one visits while ensuring costumes and equipment are cleaned per event. “Due to the virus, we are taking extra measures to thoroughly disinfecting and cleaning all to make sure we keep our staff and clients safe. Your safety is our number one priority,” the company wrote on Facebook.

However, this was before the U.S. surpassed 124,000 confirmed coronavirus cases – more than 50,000 coming straight from NYC. The city has 672 deaths related to the virus thus far.

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If You Can Dream NYC has since urged its followers to stay home to minimize the spread of the virus.