Dollywood no longer requiring guests to wear face masks outdoors

by Brittani Tuttle

As vaccines continue to roll out across the country, theme parks are reexamining their health and safety protocols to adapt to the changes. Dollywood in Pigeon Forge, Tenn. is taking the first big step — no longer requiring guests to do temperature checks or wear face masks when outdoors.

Photo via Dollywood

As of April 12, 2021, the park has adjusted their COVID-19 health and safety requirements to the following:

  • Outdoor areas, where six feet of physical distance can be maintained between parties, are now mask-optional spaces.
    • Guest masking is still required at all ticketing areas, park entry, on rides and trams, in queues, and in all indoor areas and areas where guests cannot physically distance outdoors.
  • Guests and employees are still required to participate in a self-assessment health screening before entering the park, but temperature checks are no longer part of that process.
  • Areas of the property where masks are required will be clearly marked and strictly enforced.
  • Employees will continue to wear masks at all times while on property.

According to the Dollywood website, these policy changes were implemented as a result of the evolving knowledge about COVID-19 and the updated recommendations from the CDC. Dollywood states on the site that it is confident that these updated policies “will make our properties even more accessible while maintaining a safe and family-friendly environment.”

A similar rule is in place at Legoland Florida Resort, where face coverings are required in all indoor locations and on rides, but are optional in outdoor spaces. Walt Disney World recently began to allow guests to take off their face masks when taking outdoor photos while stationary.

Which theme park do you think will be next to relax their face mask guidelines? Is it too soon? Share your thoughts with us in the comments.


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Ann Silson April 19, 2021 - 7:43 pm

Of course it’s too soon to relax mask wearing and temperature checks! Good Lord, we’ve just started vaccinating and no one knows the extent or effectiveness of this vaccine. It is completely irresponsible to relax these safety precautions. I would boycott any theme park or entertainment venue that repeals these practices.

Jaime May 30, 2021 - 2:04 pm

Really? Just stay home then! If you are THAT scared, use common sense. I wouldn’t want someone who is scared of people to be around my children or myself.

Dustin April 26, 2021 - 6:22 am

Good job Dollywood. Common sense is beginning to prevail. We have visited Dollywood probably 15 – 20 times and are pass holders, as we are to Disney. We’ve made the decision to no longer visit parks enforcing outdoor mask policies. The practice goes against all logic and reason. I’m proud of Dollywood for taking a step away from the nonsense and a step toward normal. Love you guys. We will be visiting in 2 weeks and can’t wait!

Melissa Anderson April 29, 2021 - 1:41 am

Just earned my business after reading this. Science doesn’t support masking at all, so let’s “follow the science” already!

Lawrence Harney October 11, 2021 - 6:55 pm

One would have better luck stopping mosquitos with chain link fencing than stipping a virus with a piece of cloth or paper. This is mass insanity. Can you breathe through it? Then a virus can get through.


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