More and more attractions and theme parks are slowly starting to reopen. Sesame Place just announced a phased reopening,with capacity limitations, on Jul. 24. The reopening of the park will include strictly enforced and enhanced health and safety protocols for cleaning and sanitizing, physical distancing, face covering requirements, and temperature screening. A new online reservation system will also help manage capacity so that guests can enjoy a safe and fun experience while maintaining physical distancing.
The phased reopening plan was approved by the state of Pennsylvania.
“We thank Governor Wolf for his support of tourism in Pennsylvania as we prepare to reopen Sesame Place on July 24,” said Marc Swanson, interim CEO of SeaWorld Entertainment, Inc. “We have worked diligently with state and local health officials, outside consultants and attraction industry leaders to enhance our already strict health, safety and cleanliness standards. These protocols and guidelines will be modified based on evolving industry standards and methodologies, public health and governmental directives, and advancing scientific knowledge on the transmissibility of COVID-19.”
“We’re thrilled to reopen our park and celebrate our 40th birthday this year,” said Cathy Valeriano, president of Sesame Place. “We know our guests are eager to return and we are just as excited to continue to provide them with fun, inspiring and memorable experiences, while taking the necessary steps to make families feel safe when they visit our park during this milestone year and beyond.”
Sesame Place has detailed safety information about the measures that guests can expect when the park reopens, including key operational changes. Specific information can be found by visiting sesameplace.com/philadelphia/park-info/park-safety/.
Specific enhancements to key operational areas include:
- Guest Arrivals & Ticketing – Enhanced cleaning protocols will be implemented at arrival areas and for high-contact surfaces. Spacing will be increased for our touchless turnstiles enabling appropriate physical distancing.
- Restaurants – Restaurants at the park will include arranged seating layouts to accommodate physical distancing. Tables and chairs will be sanitized with increased frequency, condiment and topping stations will be closed, utensils will be pre-packaged, and guests with refillable products will be provided single-use alternatives. Buffet-style service areas will be adjusted or closed until further notice.
- Retail Shops – In our retail shops, we will have markings for physical distancing and signage directing guests to defined entrances and exits. To minimize contact of items at checkout, bagging and wrapping materials will be given to customers.
- Public Spaces – Across the park and especially in high-contact areas, enhanced cleaning protocols will be implemented. This includes an increased number of hand sanitizer stations, areas with single-direction guest flow, modified seating in venues to maintain physical distancing and cleaning according to enhanced protocols. Lounge chair seating will also be modified to maintain physical distancing.
- Rides & Attractions – Queue lines for all rides will have markings for physical distancing and modified seating will be implemented to maintain physical distancing. We will have hand sanitizer available at the entrance and exit of all rides and will increase the frequency of cleaning and sanitizing. Specific protocols will be implemented for water rides for employees and guests and unless play areas meet distancing protocols, they will be temporarily closed. For a list of temporary changes and attraction closures, please visit the attractions page on the website.
- Parade, Shows and Meet-and-Greets – Depending on the ability to ensure physical distancing for guests and team members, certain components of shows and meet-and-greets, such as those involving guest interactions, character interactions and photo opportunities will be modified or removed. Parades will be temporarily unavailable. For more information on the parade, shows and character meet-and-greets, please visit the shows & parade page on the website.
To help manage capacity to maintain physical distancing within the park, advance online reservations will be required. 2020 Season Pass Holders will enjoy an exclusive reservation time that opens at 9 a.m. on Jul. 20. Reservations for single day ticket holders will be available starting at 10 a.m. on the same day. Starting TODAY through Jul. 26, guests can take advantage of the ‘Sunny Days on the Way!’ sale with admission starting as low as $39.99. Please visit sesameplace.com/Philadelphia/reservation for more details.
Guests can receive the latest information on hours of operation for each Sesame Place by visiting Sesameplace.com/Philadelphia.
Featured photo: Wikimedia Commons