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Parks And Museums Reopened Thursday, National Zoo On Friday

The 8-week-old panda cub will get a name when she reaches her 100th day, per Chinese custom.
Courtney Janney, Smithsonian's National Zoo
The 8-week-old panda cub will get a name when she reaches her 100th day, per Chinese custom.

In the last two weeks, the government shutdown shuttered many of the District's most beloved institutions. With the bipartisan deal struck late Wednesday night, residents and visitors alike can expect to see open doors once more.

First and foremost, the panda cam is back online. The 8-week-old cub didn't put her growth on hold for the federal government, jumping up to five pounds since her last exam. The Panda House will remain closed to visitors for a few more months, but visitors will be welcomed back through the National Zoo's gates on Friday.

Visitors will even get a nice discount for their patience if they visit over the weekend.

The jersey barriers and temporary fences circumvented during two weeks of rallies by conservatives and military veterans have been removed. Visitors can now freely visit all memorials and monuments managed by the National Park Service.

All museums operated by the Smithsonian are open as usual, and the National Gallery of Art is opening after an initial concern that they wouldn't have enough security personnel.

Also open are the United States Holocaust Museum, the U.S. Capitol visitor's center, and NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center.

Less close to home, all national parks were reopened on Thursday, from the Shenandoah to Assateague Island, where two weeks ago, park officials had to sweep through the federally-run side of the park asking surfers and campers to leave.


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