Bays Mountain Park taking 'first steps toward normal operations'

Matthew Lane • May 28, 2020 at 8:00 AM

KINGSPORT — Bays Mountain Park will reopen its Nature Center and resume some programming, both at limited capacity, beginning on June 1.

The trails and the animal habitats have been and will remain open as well. However, the planetarium, adventure course and zip line remain closed.

“We want to thank everyone for your support and understanding these past few months,” Park Manager Rob Cole said in a statement, “and we ask that you continue to be patient as we take these first steps toward normal operations.”


— Only 20 guests will be allowed in the building at a time.

— Only the upper level and gift shop area will be accessible.

— Guests should follow the designated flow of traffic through the Nature Center and keep visits brief so others can enter.

— Bays Mountain recommends that guests wear a mask when visiting the Nature Center.

— Maintain social distance (at least 6 feet) from others and wash your hands frequently.


— Programs and barge rides are limited to nine participants (plus program leader).

— All nature programs will be held outdoors (weather permitting).

— Programs are $3 per person or free for park members.

— Barge rides will be held weather permitting and are $5 per person or free for park members.


For your safety and that of staff and other visitors, park officials ask that you refrain from visiting Bays Mountain if you feel sick or are experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19. All visitors will need to stop at the gate when entering the park. Park entry is $5 per vehicle or free to park members who show their membership card.

Tickets are available in the Nature Center the day of the program. Guests should arrive early to ensure plenty of time to get tickets.

On June 1, the park will resume rentals of the Pavilion at Lilypad Cove to groups not exceeding 10 people. No other facilities will be available for rent at this time.

Bays Mountain is committed to the health and safety of both guests and park staff. The park is following recommendations and best practices from the CDC, the Sullivan County Regional Health Department and Tennessee Pledge. The park will continue to monitor any developments on the COVID-19 pandemic and how these might affect operations.

For more information, visit baysmountain.com or call (423) 229-9447.

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