WARREN COUNTY (FOX19) - Kings Island has canceled Halloween Haunt and WinterFest for 2020 due to “ongoing uncertainties surrounding COVID-19,” according to a park release issued Tuesday.
“We have had to make the difficult decision to cancel both Halloween Haunt and WinterFest this year due to operating constraints in our region,” Kings Island Vice President and General Manager Mike Koontz said in the release.
Since its return to the park in 2017 after a 12-year absence, WinterFest has taken place yearly in the month of December, featuring several million holiday lights as well as 10 winter wonderlands, 16 live shows and 19 rides.
The loss of Halloween Haunt looms nearly as large. Voted ‘Best Theme Park Halloween Event’ in the country by USA Today readers in 2018, the event features scare-inducing shows, nighttime rides, haunted mazes and a variety of spine-tingling scare zones.
Alongside news of the two cancelations, Koontz announced an all-new family event, Tricks and Treats Fall Fest, beginning Sept. 26.
The new event will feature rides, unique food offerings, entertainment and activities for all ages, the release states. Perhaps most importantly, it will enable social distancing and “capacity management,” Koontz said.
The park will continue to operate through Nov. 1 on select days, he added.
Previously the park announced two summertime events, Grand Carnivale and Summer Nights, had been postponed until 2021 due to COVID-19.
The park reopened July 2 with social distancing measures in place.
“It has truly been a unique season,” Koontz said. “We want to thank our guests and associates for making Kings Island a fun and safe place to visit. The park’s new health and safety measures were supported by everyone visiting the park, and our associates have gone above and beyond expectations in creating a safe environment for families to spend time with each other.”