A: A qualified “yes”! An outdoor amusement park can be a low-risk outing if you pay attention to context and use your SMARTS!
Context matters, especially these three factors:
1️⃣ Do you have to travel a long way to get to the park? (Closer is better, no plane travel is better).
2️⃣ What is community transmission like in the local area? (Lower is better, especially low and declining).
3️⃣ What is vaccine coverage like in the local area? (Higher is better!)
Once you’re headed to the park, use your SMARTS:
📏Space out that line: Lines for rides are one place things can get crowded. Do your part to maintain 6′ spacing, and use “we” language to coach others. (“Shall we space things out a bit here?”)
😷 Masks: For everyone! The whole time! If unmasking for eating/drinking, sit away from others (or save the snacks for later).
💨Air: Keep it fresh! Outdoor attractions are better than indoor ones where it’s hard to assess ventilation.
🚫 Restrict your interactions with others: A park that is enforcing attendance limits to keep density low is good. If it feels too crowded, be prepared to leave (and prepare the kids for that possibility).
🕖 Time: A visit of a few hours is better than all day. This can be hard to justify when day-long tickets are expensive. Look for deals on partial days.
💉 Shots: The more adults in your group that are fully vaccinated, the better. Note that the CDC has updated travel guidance for fully vaccinated adults (link below).
And two last important points for any trip to an amusement park, regardless of the pandemic:
🖐Good hand hygiene really pays off, for COVID-19 plus any other bugs that travel via boogers, spit, and poop! Use sanitizer and wipes often for hands, faces, and high-touch surfaces like lap bars and door handles.
🤧 Is anybody in your group sick or not feeling well? Stay home and reschedule!! Please! (Yes, even if the trip is already planned.)