Mark Pauls has been named the newest general manager of Kennywood Park.By John Shumway

WEST MIFFLIN (KDKA) – What a time to be named the new general manager of an amusement park.

However, today, Kennywood names Mark Pauls the new general manager and he tells KDKA’s John Shumway that the parent company is moving its headquarters from California to right here.

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Pauls says they have a major facelift on the horizon for Kennywood, but surviving the pandemic is the first priority.

Due to reduced capacity requirements, some rides and attractions like the Steel Curtain are closed. The reservation required that started the year has been scrapped but the COVID precautions are still fully in place.

However, some of those requirements have turned some patrons away.

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“It’s rare that you have that situation but we have turned and we turn away the entire group,” Pauls said. “Once they are identified, they are rechecked because we want to make sure it’s not someone who’s been in the sun and gotten a little overheated, so we’ll verify their temperature again. I think we’ve had one or two that we had to say, ‘you should go home or see your doctor.’ The group is asked to leave and they understand in that situation.”

Kennywood goes to weekend-only operations after next week, with the exception of Labor Day.

Pauls says decisions are still being made about park events such as the holiday lights.

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He didn’t specify just how much business is off but tickets are half price and ride lines are much shorter than usual.