The days are getting hotter and longer, but with the reopening of pools and water parks, there will finally be a place to cool off.
Pools and parks have been working to find a balance between safety and fun, ensuring proper social distancing in what would typically be crowded areas. In most cases, chairs will be rearranged and there will be markings for social distancing in areas where lines form.
Masks are encouraged in many common areas, however, they are not recommended in the water as a wet mask can create difficulty breathing. For now, many will operate at less than 50% capacity and will operate on a reservation-only basis — so be sure to plan ahead.
“That still allows us to have a good amount of people but making sure everybody’s safe and properly social distanced,” Steve Edwards, VP of operations at Coney Island, said.
For parks and their guests alike, the openings bring a much-needed chance to get out of the house and enjoy the summer sun.
“I know everybody’s been chomping at the bit to do stuff and have fun and do something exciting, so we’re looking forward to being able to provide that kind of entertainment for people,” Edwards said.
Here’s what nearby waterparks have planned for this summer:
Coney Island - NOW OPEN
You can slide down Coney Island’s Silver Bullet or Cyclone slides into the Sunlite Pool or make a splash off of one of three diving boards at Cannon Ball Cove.
The Typhoon Tower and Twister Waterslides will open at a later date, as the park works with state and local health departments to determine safety protocols. Still, Edwards said the park is a great place to cool down and have fun this summer.
“I think what guests will notice most is that Coney Island can be a place where you can feel safe and you can actually spread out,” he said.
Seats have been rearranged to allow for social distancing, or you can also bring your own folding chair or towel and claim a spot in the grass.
Like many other venues, Coney Island will operate at 50% capacity and will be taking reservations in advance.
Season passes for 2020 will also be valid in 2021 and day passes will be sold for specific days only.
For more info on this summer’s adjusted policies, visit coneyislandpark.com.
Address: 6201 Kellogg Ave., 10 miles east of downtown Cincinnati
Great Wolf Lodge, Mason - NOW OPEN
Great Wolf Lodge has opened all of its indoor water park’s 13 slides and eight pools.
“We’re excited to get families back to having fun with confidence because of the new safeguards we put into place across our resorts,” Murray Hennessy, Chief Executive Officer for Great Wolf Resorts, said in a news release.
Modifications around the park, including increased sanitation and a 50% reduced capacity, will help keep guests safe and maintain CDC guidelines.
In addition to markings for social distancing in lines for slides and retail shops, Great Wolf Lodge will also provide face masks, disinfectant wipes and sanitizer for guests.
Additional hand sanitizer stations will be added throughout the resort and plexiglass will be installed in areas where longer interactions occur, according to the release.
For information on reserving a room, visit www.greatwolf.com/mason. Day passes are not currently offered.
Address: 2501 Great Wolf Drive, Mason, next door to Kings Island
Kings Island Soak City - CLOSED
Although King’s Island’s amusement park — which features more than 100 rides, shows and attractions — is now open for season pass holders and will open to daily ticket holders July 12, the opening date for Soak City, the park’s 33-acre water parks, is still undetermined.
The amusement park will have an online reservation system as well as enhanced cleaning procedures and 2020 season passes will be valid through 2021.
Check visitkingsisland.com for waterpark updates.
Address: 6300 Kings Island Drive, Mason
Zoombezi Bay - NOW OPEN
Zoombezi Bay is welcoming guests to the 22-acre park on the Columbus Zoo’s property.
“Your visit to Zoombezi Bay will look different, but please know that these new policies and procedures are there to provide a safe and fun experience for all of our guests,” the park’s website reads.
There will be markings in lines for water slides although some attractions, such as the tipping bucket at Baboon Lagoon, will not be open.
Plexiglass will be installed in some locations and seats will be rearranged to allow for proper distancing. You can learn more about Zoombezi Bay’s reopening plan at https://zoombezibay.columbuszoo.org/
Tickets must be purchased for specific days and times. Reservations can be made online.
Address: 4850 W. Powell Road, Powell
Aqua Adventures at Land of Illusion - NOW OPEN
Aqua Adventures — complete with an inflatable obstacle course — is now open to the public. Hand sanitizer will be available throughout the park and equipment will be sanitized between uses.
Chairs will be separated to allow for social distancing and signage will mark proper social distancing in areas where lines form. Call (513) 423-9960 or visit https://www.landofillusion.com/aqua/ for more information.
Address: 8762 Thomas Road, Middletown
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