MASON, Ohio (FOX19) - Kings Island is reopening its gates starting Thursday following a months-long closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Park officials gave FOX19 NOW an early look inside Wednesday afternoon. In the process, they revealed some of the more nuanced changes to the park experience intended to guard against the spread of the virus.
These changes come in addition to those that have grabbed the headlines, including a mask mandate for park-goers and reservations that must be made ahead of time.
For one, Kings Island will not be handing out maps for guests in order to avoid people gathering at a kiosk to fetch them.
The park will also have ‘relax zones’ where, if you can social distance, you can remove your mask and take a breather in the shade.
Park staff have also added more barriers between employees and guests and also stepped up their sanitation game.
Other new precautions include:
- Kings Island is asking for cashless payments.
- At least one person per party will have to download the Kings Island mobile app to enable contactless entry and make a required reservation before you go.
- At the Kings Island parking toll booth, KI will confirm your reservation and proof of parking payment. If you do not have a parking voucher, you may pay with a cashless payment method such as a credit card.
- You will pass through a temperature check. If anyone in your party has a temperature of 100.4°F/38°C or higher, you will be directed to return home and reschedule your visit
- Once at the park, some seats on rides and attractions will not be available due to social distancing rules.
See all the new requirements here.
“Safety is our top priority, so this was nothing new for us,” Kings Island Communications Director Chad Showalter said. “We consulted and were informed by the CDC, state and our local health agencies on what the best practices were in an environment like Kings Island, and we combined all of that feedback and put together the plan that we have in place today.”
The park will reopen for the first time this season on Thursday for season pass holders and Sunday for everyone else.