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Great Escape not opening in 2020

Great Escape not opening in 2020

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A lifeguard stands on duty at the Bonazi Pipelines waterslide ride in Hurricane Harbor at Six Flags Great Escape in Queensbury in 2017. The business announced Friday it is not reopening this season.

QUEENSBURY — Great Escape is not opening for the season, officials announced Friday in an email to season pass holders and members.

“Your safety is always our priority,” wrote Mark Kupferman, senior vice president for consumer and guest experience.

All season passes and pre-purchased tickets for 2020 will be valid during the 2021 season, he said.

“We look forward to welcoming you and your family back to the park next year,” he wrote. “We appreciate your understanding during these very challenging times. Please stay safe.”

Amusement parks have not yet been allowed to reopen in New York state.

Great Escape officials developed a safety plan months ago, in hopes of opening at the start of Phase 4, only to learn just days before Phase 4 began that amusement parks were not included.

Since then, the state has slowly allowed gyms, bowling alleys, dance studios, malls and other businesses deemed “risky” to reopen with restrictions to make them safer. But there has been no word on when or how amusement parks could open.

In recent weeks, Six Flags — which owns Great Escape — has sent out a series of surveys to passholders, asking them about Christmas and Halloween celebrations at the parks.

The emails proposed several ways of offering activities to reduce the chance of spreading coronavirus, and asked passholders to rate them based on whether the passholder would attend. Ideas included timed entry to rides to eliminate crowded lines, outdoor-only dining, no up-close visits with Santa and holding Fright Fest during the day.

But as of early September, amusement parks were still classified by the state as “high-risk” entertainment, with no indication of when they could reopen.

You can reach Kathleen Moore at 742-3247 or kmoore@poststar.com. Follow her on Twitter @ByKathleenMoore or at her blog on www.poststar.com.

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