SHAKOPEE, Minn. (WCCO) — Valleyfair kicked off the season Friday with new foods and additional events for the summer. This year marks a return to normalcy for the Shakopee amusement park.
The adrenaline is back after a tepid previous season.
“It felt a little different. And this year it really feels like we’re getting back to that almost normal sense of fun,” said Kelsey Megard, Valleyfair’s communications manager.
Due to COVID-19, the park was only open five days a week with limited hours last year. This year, it’s back to normal.
“We were only really open for an eight-hour window,” Valleyfair vice president and general manager Raul Rehnborg said, referring to last summer. “(In) 2022 we will be open six days a week and the schedule will look a lot like 2019 and previous years. So we’re excited to be able to offer our guests a bigger and better deal.”
There are no capacity restrictions for visitors to Valleyfair this year. Also missing: reservations required.
“I think having no reservations is a huge benefit for our guests. It allows you to take that impulsive trip to Valleyfair if you wish. If you’re sitting at home thinking about what we should do today and you decide you want to ride a roller coaster, you can do it this year,” said Megard.
This summer also brings back Valleyfair’s international employee program that was canceled in 2021. More than 400 student visa workers from around the world returned by 2022.
“They come here to work at Valleyfair and experience American culture. And that’s why we’re excited to bring you here and have you experience Minnesota. And they are great employees to have,” Rehnborg said.
It’s an iconic Minnesota summer spot, back in full force.
“Valleyfair is part of the fabric of this community. And the winters are long here,” Rehnborg said.