PIPESTEM — Pipestem Adventure Lake and Splash Park are open for summer fun while keeping COVID-19 safety measures and guest safety top of mind.

As both venues open for their second season, Mareya Birchfield, Chief Operating Office of Pipestem Adventures, says COVID-19 safety measures have completely changed their day-to-day operations.

The most prominent way the new measures have changed their operations is the capacity. Birchfield says they can fit “half the people [they] did beforehand.”

Birchfield says they used a formula to determine how many guests could be at the Adventure Lake and Splash Pad, respectively. At any given time, 119 guests can be at the Adventure Lake, and 100 guests can be at the Splash Pad.

“We are working out a flexible system to where people are going to be able to turn in their wristbands and then for however many wristbands we receive, we can sell that many more wristbands,” Birchfield says.

A second way the new measures have changed their operations are the sanitation procedures.

“We have a whole new position that we have never had before, a specific sanitation position,” says Birchfield. “We have someone come in every day and their job is to make sure that everything is sanitized, and they are also there to promote social distancing amongst our guests.”

Katie Lester, one of the multiple employees trained on the sanitation procedures, says she spends a little extra time sanitizing items like chairs and life jackets to ensure they are thoroughly cleaned for guests.

While these measures have changed how the splash pad and adventure lake operate, the staff’s efforts have not gone unnoticed.

“When we opened, I got a lot of feedback, and people were saying ‘thank you for taking these measures, it makes us feel safer’,” says Birchfield.

Julie Eller, a guest at the Splash Pad along with her daughter and granddaughter, commented that staff was doing a “[really] good job about keeping people at a distance.”

Tina, Kaylee and Miranda Cales said they have had a positive experience at the adventure lake despite the new safety measures and social distancing.

With summer just beginning, the staff at the adventure lake and splash pad are continuing to welcome guests.

Birchfield says the best way to get a ticket is by making an advance online reservation.

You can make your reservations and find other information at https://wvstateparks.com/things-to-do/swimming/splash-park-adventure-lake/

Heather Hamilton is a freelance reporter for the Princeton Times. Contact her at hmhjournalism91@gmail.com

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