Denham Spring water park among first to reopen as shutdown eases
DENHAM SPRINGS - The water park at North Park in Denham Springs reopened Monday, even though aquatic amusement parks are not supposed to open until phase three of the state's reopening plan.
"We opened up a little earlier than we were expecting. We actually were expecting to open up during phase three, in a couple weeks," Park Assistant Manager Joshua Zganjar said.
The assistant manager says they submitted their application and plan to reopen last week. The state fire marshal and the Louisiana Department Heath then gave them the OK to open Wednesday.
But things are completely back to normal.
"Probably the most obvious would be our capacity. We had to cut our capacity in half, down to 230," Zganjar explained.
A number of hand sanitation stations were added as well, and signs are posted reminding people to stay at least six feet away from one another. Half of the poolside long chairs have also been removed.
"All the staff have on masks. We have our masks, and we're social distancing, not getting into the water with a lot people around," Kenyata Carter said.
Carter and her two daughters drove in from Hammond after hearing about the water park opening on Facebook.
"It's nice. It's our first time and we are enjoying it," Carter said.
Less than 200 people came fo the park's opening day, but operators expect the attendance to increase with it being the only one in the area open for business.
"We're expecting to be busy this weekend, long lines. We just ask that people be patient with us We're just trying to make things work as best that we can," Zganjar said.
Both Blue Bayou and Liberty Lagoon in Baton Rouge are still closed due to the pandemic.