Little Rock Zoo opens with coronavirus guidelines in place

The Little Rock has opened its gates to members after closing in March because of COVID-19 concerns.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — The Little Rock Zoo has opened its gates to members after closing in March because of COVID-19 concerns.

However, there are new safety guidelines you need to know about before making a reservation. 

That’s right—reservations are something you’ll now need. 

Zoo visitor Carrie Gaines and her girls are excited the Little Rock Zoo is now open to members. 

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“We’re just excited to have activities that we’re used to and get to come out and kind of fill our days with some fun things,” Gaines said.

With signage reminding guests not to “go bear” when it comes to face masks, Gaines says it’s a good reminder.

“Every time something new opens we’re ready to kind of be safe doing it with our masks and hand sanitizer and everything,” Gaines said.

For the safety of guests, the zoo has taken several precautionary measures like requiring visitors to wear masks if they are over the age of 10 and installing sanitizing stations throughout the park. 

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The zoo is following the Arkansas Department of Health’s guidelines.

“Some of the added safety guidelines are that you do have to reserve your tickets in advance. And, we’ve done that to spread out the number of people that are allowed to come during the day to encourage social distancing,” Director of Little Rock Zoo Susan Altrui said.

Reservations can be made on the zoo’s website. There are also gates and chairs blocking off areas to keep the flow of guests moving in one direction.

“We have a one-way path. That’s in an effort to help encourage social distancing and also to help to guarantee you get to see all the habitats along the way,” Altrui said.

Zoo staff is doing what they can to keep people 6-feet apart when they visit the animals. 

“We do have some areas that are closed. Some of the high touchpoints, like our indoor areas, like the reptile house, that will be closed, unfortunately,” Altrui said.

The zoo will be re-open to the general public on June 29th. 

Staff will also be disinfecting railing and benches every 2 hours.