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Metro Richmond Zoo reopens (with changes) June 15

drive-thru penguin.jpg
Posted at 8:31 AM, Jun 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-10 18:08:15-04

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- The Metro Richmond Zoo will reopen as a walk-in zoo on June 15, zoo director Jim Andelin announced Wednesday.

The zoo closed in March due to COVID-19 and later reopened as a drive-thru only zoo.

Visitors will notice some changes, as the zoo will follow safety orders that allow it to reopen under state COVID-19 guidelines:

  1. The Zoo will operate at 50% capacity.
  2. Capacity will be controlled by our admissions software to limit the number of guests entering the park.
  3. All tickets should be purchased online to reserve your entry time.
  4. 6 feet markers have been placed in queuing areas and potential gathering points to encourage social distancing.
  5. The flow of traffic entering the park will be different. Members and guests redeeming daily tickets will have separate lines to reduce large crowds. Follow the directions when arriving at the park. All guests will exit the park at a different location than the entrance area.
  6. The following pathways will be temporarily adjusted to one-way traffic: bird aviary, budgie aviary, reptile area. The bat exhibit will be limited to one group of visitors at a time. Only guests who have purchased a budgie stick may enter the budgie aviary to reduce traffic.
  7. An outdoor gift shop will be available to reduce large crowds in the indoor store.
  8. The membership center will be limited to three families at a time. The inside gift shop will be limited to 15 people at a time. Guests entering these buildings should follow the Governor’s mask mandate.
  9. The following attractions will be closed: the playground and all scheduled public keeper talks.
  10. All rides will operate with adjustments. Railings and touchpoints on all rides will be wiped down between uses. Train: Sneezeguards have been added in between rows of seats. Drop Tower: Guests will be seated one chair apart from non-family members. Carousel: Only the outside animals will be available to ride.
  11. All picnic tables have been adjusted to allow six feet apart when sitting to eat.
  12. All restrooms will be disinfected more frequently (minimum: once an hour). Staff will routinely clean high touch surfaces (ex: doors, doorknobs, countertops, vending machines, stroller rentals, token machines.)
  13. Employees working with guests will wear face masks.