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Elitch Gardens will not open this year

The Denver theme park announced it was unable to get government approval to open.

DENVER — Elitch Gardens Theme & Water Park in Denver will not open at all in 2020 after being unable to get government approval amid the coronavirus pandemic, the park announced in a statement Friday.

The park said it has been working with industry experts and government officials to develop sanitation and social distancing protocols since an executive order from Gov. Jared Polis prohibited the operation of amusement parks due to COVID-19.

The park also said considerable resources have been spent training employees, inspecting rides, filling pools and sprucing up the property in anticipation of opening.

“We are terribly saddened that for the first time in 130 years Elitch Gardens will not be allowed to entertain families from throughout our region,” said David Dorman, general manager at Elitch Gardens Theme & Water Park. “I know that we have all felt the frustration and impacts of this pandemic. We appreciate the support of our community and look forward to welcoming our guests and team members back in 2021.”

The park said pre-purchased 2020 season passes will automatically be transferred over to a 2021 VIP season pass. All pre-purchased 2020 single-day tickets will also be automatically transferred to 2021.

The park said it serves more than a million customers and hires more than 1,400 people every year.

Elitch Gardens is located in downtown Denver right next to Empower Field at Mile High Stadium.

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