Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced Saturday, October 17th that movie theaters will be allowed to reopen in New York on Friday, October 23rd.
Gov. Cuomo announced that movie theaters outside of New York City can reopen at 25 percent capacity under state guidance. No more than 50 people are allowed in front of each screen in each movie theater at once. Theaters can only open outside of New York City in counties that have COVID-19 positivity rates of less than 2 percent on a 14-day average and do not have any cluster zones. Theaters will be subject to rigorous state guidance and enforcement.
With movie theaters allowed to reopen in New York, outside of the city, Showcase Cinemas announced that it will be reopening its six New York locations Friday, including three in Westchester County. Under the company’s “Be Showcase Safe” health and safety program, the theaters at the Showcase Cinemas de Lux Cross County movie theater and the Showcase Cinema de Lux in the Ridge Hill Shopping Center in Yonkers and the City Center 15 Cinema de Lux in White Plains will be open for business Friday, October 23rd.
According to a spokeswoman, the Be Showcase Safe program includes employee health screenings before starting work, the installation of air-purifying systems, private screenings, reduced auditorium seating capacity, automatic seating with social distancing and increased and enhanced auditorium cleaning between shows.
Rockland and Orange counties are two of the dozen counties that can not reopen theaters. The densely populated counties of Nassau and Suffolk on Long Island and the country club-riddled Westchester County are in the clear, as are the cities of Buffalo, Rochester, Albany, and Syracuse.
There will also be mask requirements, social distance markers and hand-sanitizing stations.
When Gov. Andrew Cuomo recently announced his decision to allow movie theaters to reopen, it only included theaters outside of New York City.
Theaters could only have 25 percent capacity, with assigned seating, additional staffing and enhanced air filtration, ventilation and purification.
The county in which the theaters are located must have an average positive testing rate of less than 2 percent over a 14-day period.
Masks will also be required at all times except when seated, eating or drinking.
Showcase Cinemas will have contactless payment options and food/beverage/ticket pre-order through its website and app.
Concession offerings will be available in covered containers, and plexiglass shields have been added at the box office and concession areas.
Private screenings will be offered for family and friends. For $99, an auditorium can be booked for up to 20 guests, with films chosen from classic films and fan favorites, including Halloween films.
For $199, an auditorium can be booked for new films, such as “Tenet,” “The War with Grandpa” and “Unhinged.”
More information about the Be Showcase Safe program can be found here.