AGAWAM, Mass. (WWLP) – Six Flags New England has announced they will open on Friday, May 14 to members and season pass holders and then to the general public on Saturday, May 15.

The decision comes after Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker announced Tuesday that the state will move forward in the reopening process (phase 4, step 2) starting May 10, and have placed plans for further reopening on May 29 and August 1. The Baker Administration will also relax the face coverings order for some outdoor settings, effective April 30. 

The park will be able to operate at 50% capacity. All guests including members, season pass holders, and day-ticket holders will need to reserve their visit on the Six Flags reserve website to manage attendance and stagger arrival times.

“We are beyond thrilled that we can reopen our theme park with a full complement of our more than 100 rides, attractions, and unique experiences,” said Six Flags New England Park President Pete Carmichael. “Now more than ever families need an escape that is safe, accessible, and fun. The thrill is calling and our team is eager to welcome back our Members, Season Pass holders, and guests once again.”

According to Six Flags New England spokesperson Jennifer McGrath, the park developed a safety plan with epidemiologists that meets or exceeds federal, state, and local guidelines for sanitization, hygiene, and social distancing protocols. The safety plan is as follows:

Health screenings for guests and employees:

  • Contactless IR thermal imaging will be used to screen temperatures of guests and employees prior to entry
  • Individuals will be required to acknowledge and abide by the company’s health policies, which prohibit park entry if guests have recently been exposed to or are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19
  • All guests over the age of two and all team members will be required to wear face masks covering the nose and mouth throughout their visit/workday
  • Masks will be available for sale at the front gate for any guest without one

Social distancing:

  • Distance markers will be added in all park entry, ride, restroom, retail location, and dining lines
  • Dining areas will be adjusted to allow ample space between seated parties
  • Guests will be separated by empty rows and/or seats on all roller coasters, rides, and attractions
  • Six-foot viewing areas will be marked for guests to observe gameplay while adhering to social distancing requirements
  • Advanced security screenings will enable touchless bag checks
  • Guests viewing outdoor entertainment will be separated by at least six feet
  • Capacity at indoor venues and on some attractions will be reduced to meet social distancing requirements

Extensive sanitization and disinfecting protocols:

  • Trained and dedicated cleaning teams have been put in place
  • Rides, restraints, and handrails will be cleaned throughout the day
  • Team members will frequently sanitize and disinfect high-touch points areas
  • Restroom staff will be stationed to disinfect each stall and sink on a frequent basis
  • Multiple hand-washing and alcohol-based hand-sanitizer stations will be located throughout the parks
  • All team member work areas will be regularly sanitized and disinfected

Sanitized food preparation and service:

  • Modified menus will help facilitate touchless transactions
  • Self-service buffets and salad bars will be reconfigured to eliminate guest contact with food
  • Condiments, self-serve cutlery, and napkins will be provided to guests with their meals as required

Commercial-grade cleaning equipment and supplies:

  • All employees will be issued Team Member Action Packs which include a safety face mask, safety glasses, and disposable gloves
  • Low-pressure backpack sprayers will be utilized for disinfecting large areas
  • Abundant supplies of sanitizers and disinfectants will be available
  • Microfiber cloths will be used to sanitize surfaces
  • Queue line supplies, fencing, and tents will be in place to promote safe social distancing

Multi-layered guest and employee communication:

  • Frontline team members will go through extensive COVID-19 training
  • Safety messaging and reminders will be displayed on Six Flags’ website, and in newsletters
  • Distance markers and physical distance indicators will be in place
  • Informational safety signage will be posted throughout the park