The Riverview cineplex in Hay River will be re-opening its doors this Friday, August 14, since its closure back in March.
“We’re still a work in progress but I’m excited to open on Friday, getting things back to normal as best as can be,” says Michelle Schaub, head manager of Riverview.
Seats will be feathered out and socially distanced with no one directly behind or beside you. The theatre will now run at about half-capacity with only 105 seats available compared to its original 196 seats, she adds.
To minimize contact with staff, pre-payment and reserved seating will be coming soon, as stated in a Facebook post.
A maximum of four people per group will be allowed inside at a time.
Although masks are not mandatory, Riverview management asks that you wear a mask until you are seated.
“It has been a long process, but I want to make sure patrons and staff are comfortable to come to the movies again,” says Schaub.
“Luckily, because we own the building the effects of rent have been reduced and we’ve been able to handle those things internally,” she adds.
“Movie theaters are not a cheap operation,” she says. Over the course of a few weeks, Schaub has had to throw out roughly $2,000 worth of expired candy, service and replace $10,000 worth of equipment, buy masks, and other COVID-19 supplies.
Social distancing stickers will be placed on the floor of the theater to assist guests moving around the theater, to minimize idling.
Once a film has ended, patrons will be required to leave one row at a time, through the exit door at the front of the cinema.
A maximum of two people will be able to use the washroom at a time and washrooms will be sanitized after each use.
On opening night, Riverview theatre will be offering Unhinged and Trolls World Tour at around 8 p.m.