State guidance for corn mazes, hayrides, haunted houses, petting zoos

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NEW YORK, NY – OCTOBER 24: Atmosphere at The Novogratz Family and SeriusFun Childrens Network Halloween Haunted House on October 24, 2013 in New York City. (Photo by John Lamparski/Getty Images for Robert and Cortney Novogratz)

NEW YORK (WETM) — Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo today announced new state guidance for agritourism businesses as New York state enters fall.

The businesses—which include corn mazes, pick-your-own fruit and vegetable operations, hayrides, and haunted houses—are considered low-risk outdoor arts and entertainment and are permitted to operate under New York’s NY Forward guidance, according to the Governor’s Office.

“New York State’s amazing outdoor attractions and recreational opportunities are a boon for families and communities during the fall season each year, and we want New Yorkers to be able to enjoy this time with their family responsibly and safely,” Cuomo said.

Corn mazes

Corn mazes are permitted consistent with low-risk outdoor arts and entertainment guidance and the following conditions:

  • Reduced capacity
  • Face coverings required
  • Social distance maintained between individuals/parties

Hayrides

Hayrides are permitted consistent with Public Transportation guidance and the following conditions:

  • Mandatory face coverings
  • Social distance required between individuals/parties
  • Frequently touched surfaces, such as handrails, cleaned and sanitized between rides

Pick-your-own fruit/vegetables

Pick-your own fruit and veggie operations are permitted consistent with low-risk outdoor arts and entertainment guidance and the following conditions:

  • Reduced capacity
  • Face coverings required
  • Social distance maintained between individuals/parties.

Haunted houses

Haunted houses are permitted consistent with low-risk indoor arts and entertainment guidance and the following conditions:

  • Reduced capacity
  • Face coverings required
  • Social distance maintained between individuals/parties

Petting zoos are not permitted, while farmers’ markets and craft beverage trails are allowed to remain open.

“As one of the nation’s top agricultural states,” State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball said, “New York traditionally comes together in the fall to celebrate the harvest—from apples to grapes to pumpkins. This year, while things may not look exactly the same on your favorite farm, I am happy to say we can still celebrate agriculture’s bounty and the many family-friendly activities that go with it. With this new guidance, we hope New Yorkers will be able to enjoy some of the best of New York agriculture in a safe and socially distanced manner.” 


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