Theme Park Opening to Guests for First Time in 2020 as Holiday Lights Experience
Six Flags Great America —the Thrill Capital of the Midwest— today announced the third season of Holiday in the Park will open as a lights experience on November 27, 2020. The magical holiday celebration marks the first time the theme park will open in 2020 and will feature over two and a half million dazzling lights to delight guests of all ages.
“Visiting Great America’s Holiday in the Park has become a much loved family tradition and we look forward to welcoming guests back to our park to celebrate the season. As always, the safety of our guests and team members is our top priority, and our new health and wellness protocols create an environment that allows everyone to safely experience the magic of the holidays,” said Six Flags Great America Park President Hank Salemi. “We greatly appreciate the support of Gurnee Mayor Kovarik and Governor Pritzker throughout this reopening process.”
Guests visiting Holiday in the Park Lights will experience:
- Over two and a half million dazzling holiday lights for guests to enjoy;
- Continuous, twinkling holiday light displays spread throughout the 300 acre property, created to keep guests moving and engaged;
- World-class entertainment designed for social-distanced, open-air viewing;
- Socially-distanced photo opportunities with costumed characters; and
- Special seasonal treats and surprises.
In accordance with Governor Pritzker’s reopening guidelines, the park will operate at reduced capacity levels and without rides. Great America is also implementing extensive safety measures and hygiene protocols, including several new advanced technology systems to protect guests and employees.
The theme park will employ an online reservation system to manage attendance, schedule
guests for entry by day, and to stagger arrival times to minimize proximity exposure. Other new technologies include:
- State-of-the-art thermal imaging for temperature checks;
- Advanced security screening technology for touchless bag checks; and
- Expanded mobile food ordering.
The park’s reopening plan, which the company developed in consultation with epidemiologists, meets or exceeds federal, state, and local guidelines for sanitization, hygiene, and social distancing protocols.
Reopening plans include:
Health Screenings for Guests and Team Members
- Contactless IR thermal imaging will be used to screen temperatures of guests prior to entry; all employees will be screened via hand-held methods.
- Individuals will be required to acknowledge and abide by the company’s health policies, which includes not entering the park if guests have recently been exposed to or are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19;
- Following CDC guidelines, 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/work day; and
- Masks will be available at the front gate for any guest without one.
Strictly Enforced Social Distancing
- Easy to identify distance markers will be added in all park entry, restroom, retail locations, and dining queue lines;
- Dining areas will be adjusted to allow ample space between seated parties;
- Six-foot viewing areas will be marked for guests to observe game play; arcade games will be reconfigured or deactivated to comply with social distancing requirements;
- Advanced security screenings will enable touchless bag checks;
- Capacity at indoor venues and on some attractions will be reduced to meet social distancing requirements; and
- Guests viewing outdoor entertainment will be separated by at least six feet.
Extensive Sanitization and Disinfecting Protocols
- Trained and dedicated cleaning teams have been put in place;
- Team members will frequently sanitize and disinfect high-touch points, including the following:
- Public Seating
- Trash Cans
- Restroom staff will be stationed to disinfect each stall and sink;
- Multiple hand-washing and alcohol-based hand-sanitizer stations will be located throughout the parks; and
- All team member work areas will be regularly sanitized and disinfected.
Sanitized Food Preparation and Service
- Modified menus and implementation of mobile food ordering 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; and
- Beverages will be served by attendants; any drink bottle refills will be served in a paper cup each time guests refill.
Commercial-Grade Cleaning Equipment and Supplies
- All employees will be issued Team Member Action Packs which will include the following items: 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; and
- Queue line supplies, fencing, and tents will be in place to promote safe social distancing.
Multi-Layered Guest and Team Member 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; and
- Informational safety signage will be posted throughout the park.
Park Reservations System to Manage Attendance
Six Flags will establish attendance caps that will be well below the park’s theoretical capacity in order to allow for proper social distancing. All Members, Season Pass holders and all guests with a single-day or group ticket will need to make a reservation at www.sixflags.com/greatamerica/reserve.
The process will take 5-7 minutes, and guests will complete the following steps:
- Enter their online order number, ticket number or Membership/Season Pass number;
- Select the day and the approximate time they want to visit;
- Acknowledge their understanding of the company’s health policy;
- Order pre-paid parking, if they do not already have a parking pass; and
- Watch a brief video describing new social distancing and sanitization procedures;
Guests may make reservations beginning today, October 15, 2020. All Members and Season Pass Holders will receive booking priority over single-day and group ticket buyers. Guests who need single day tickets will be able to reserve during the purchase process. Single-day tickets will also go on sale today at the rate of $19,99 per guest and include free parking.
The Six Flags brand is synonymous with family fun and thrills for all ages. These significant new changes are designed to improve the overall park experience while keeping guests and employees safe.
Six Flags Season Passes and Memberships are currently on sale. Members can enjoy priority park entry and tremendous discounts of up to 50% on nearly all food and merchandise all season long. Gold Plus, Platinum, Diamond, and Diamond Elite levels are available featuring all the perks of a Season Pass plus other benefits including admission to all Six Flags branded theme and waterparks, preferred parking, and points that can be redeemed for free food, merchandise, and special experiences. Visit the Membership Sales Center or go online to sixflags.com for more information and to sign up today.