Anakeesta announces tentative reopening date of May 21

Anakeesta to reopen May 21

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In a highly anticipated announcement, Anakeesta has revealed a tentative reopening date: Thursday, May 21 at 10 am.

Anakeesta is a self-described “magical theme park in the mountains” where guests can play, shop, dine and of course – enjoy some much deserved relaxation while enjoying the beauty of the Smokies at their finest with unrivaled views of both the mountains and downtown Gatlinburg.

While many of Anakeesta’s latest expansion projects like the new AnaVista Tower, Smokehouse restaurant, TreeVenture (a new challenge course), and a new family outdoor water play area will still be under construction at the time of the park’s reopening, a brand new plaza will be open will be awaiting guests upon their return to the park.

Read More: Anakeesta photos reveal sneak peek of park’s newest additions including AnaVista Tower

Guests will also be able to enjoy an all new Express Pass which will be included with the price of admission when purchased online. The new Express Pass will enable guests to skip the ticket counter upon arrival and get up the mountain just a bit quicker. Express Passes will also be automatically included for all season pass holders.

According to its website, Anakeesta will be rolling out a plan to keep employees and guests safe while following the recommended Tennessee Pledge guidelines.

Anakeesta's new band stage (photo courtesy of Anakeesta)
Anakeesta’s new band stage (photo courtesy of Anakeesta)

Employees will:

  • Receive training on health and safety guidelines
  • Have temperature checks upon arrival to work
  • Wear personal protection equipment (PPE)
  • Use barrier shields at registers

Guests will:

  • Be asked to postpone their visit if they have had a fever in the last 48 hours; experience coughing, shortness of breath or sore throat; been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19
  • Be encouraged to use Express Passes, which will help reduce wait times
  • Use QR codes throughout the park to access menus, ticketing and schedules
  • Follow social distancing with Sasquatch-themed guidelines throughout the park
  • Be encouraged, but not required, to wear face masks; however guests riding the Dueling Adventure Zipline course will be required to wear masks due to its close contact
Aerial Photo of Anakeesta’s new observation tower: AnaVista. (contributed photo)

Fans of the recent social media adventures of Sasquatch will also be happy to know that Anakeesta’s furry breakout star might be making the occasional appearance at the park upon reopening, and if you’re lucky, might even let you grab a photo.

Restaurants and shopping will be running at 50 percent capacity. Hand sanitizer will be provided for free, and disposable face masks will be available for a “minimal” cost. See the full list of details on Anakeesta’s website here.

Will you be planning on attending the reopening? Let us know in the comments!

Visit the CDC website and the Tennessee Department of Health website for the latest information about the coronavirus.

Disclaimer: While we do our best to bring you the most up-to-date information, attractions or prices mentioned in this article may vary by season and are subject to change. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any mentioned business, and have not been reviewed or endorsed these entities. Contact us at [email protected] for questions or comments.


  1. We are so excited Anakeesta is opening! We will be visiting the 2nd week of June!

  2. Will current annual pass holders have expiration date extended due to not being able to use during COVID19 shutdown.

  3. Hey Dee! Season pass holders who purchased their season passes prior to the park’s closing will have extended time on their passes that will match the length of time of the closure.

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