Cedar Point, Kalahari Resorts, Kings Island file suit against Dr. Amy Acton

Published: Jun. 5, 2020 at 3:37 PM EDT
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Cedar Point’s owner Cedar Fair has now joined a lawsuit Kings Island filed Thursday against the state’s top health official, demanding to immediately reopen.

Ohio’s amusement and water parks have been closed all season due to coronavirus.

Now, the state’s three largest ones - Kings Island in Mason and Cedar Point and Kalahari Resorts in Sandusky - have all sued Dr. Amy Acton, in her official capacity as director of the Ohio Department of Health.

Kings Island’s lawsuit also names the Warren County Health District.

Kalahari Resorts names the Erie County General Health District.

The lawsuits, which Cedar Fair officially joined Friday morning, claim Acton lacks authority to order the restrictions preventing water parks and amusement parks from opening amid the coronavirus pandemic. Her latest health order requires them to stay shuttered through July 1.

The lawsuit also contends Acton’s order blocking amusement parks and water parks from opening has singled out them out while other

businesses were permitted to operate.

The suit asks a judge to order the immediately reopening of amusement parks and water parks and to prevent Acton from closing them again in the future.

Most of the state’s economy and businesses already have reopened or can soon.

Gov. Mike DeWine announced Thursday zoos, museums, playgrounds cinemas and other entertainment venues can reopen starting June 10 with virus precautions and attendance restrictions. It remains unclear if state officials will allow amusement parks and water parks to reopen before July 1.

A spokesman for DeWine’s office told FOX19 NOW earlier Thursday: “The administration is still working on guidance for those facilities.”

The attorneys representing the amusement parks and water park includes Chris Finney of Cincinnati, who recently successfully sued on behalf of gyms and fitness clubs to reopen.

Hours before the first two lawsuits were filed Thursday, Ohio House Republicans took action to try to reopen amusement parks and water parks.

An amendment reopening amusement parks and water parks is now part of House Bill 665 regarding amusement park ride safety.

House GOP tries to reopen Ohio amusement parks despite health order keeping them closed.