Theme Park Tribune has learned that starting July 20, Knott’s Berry Farm is instituting a policy for Fridays and Saturdays where will guests aged 17 or younger will not be allowed into the park without a chaperone who is at least 21 years old.

The policy change comes after a series of violent fights involving teenagers led Knott’s to close three hours early on July 16. 

Theme Park Tribune heard from sources at the Buena Park, California park that such a chaperone policy was being considered and asked Knott’s for confirmation on Monday, July 18. Two days later, Knott’s provided this statement confirming the policy change to Theme Park Tribune:

For decades, Knott’s Berry Farm has been a place where families and friends come together to enjoy a one-of-a-kind park full of homegrown experiences and immersive entertainment. Millions of guests have counted on us for their daily dose of wholesome family fun, and we’re committed to keeping that promise going forward.

As part of that commitment, the park will implement a chaperone policy beginning Friday, July 22, 2022, remaining in effect on Fridays and Saturdays until further notice.

Under the policy, all guests ages 17 years old or younger must be accompanied by a chaperone who is at least 21 years old to be admitted to the park. The chaperone must present a valid photo ID with date of birth. One chaperone may accompany no more than three guests ages 17 or younger per day. Chaperones must accompany their party during entry, remain with their party at all times during their visit to the park, and be available by phone throughout their stay. Guests ages 17 years old or younger who are found inside the park unaccompanied by a chaperone will be subject to ejection.

This chaperone requirement applies to all Knott’s Berry Farm and Knott’s Soak City Waterpark ticket and season passholders.

Other parks with similar issues have also responded with more age-related restrictions. Kennywood, located near Pittsburgh, instituted a chaperone policy in 2021 requiring that anyone 17 and under had to be accompanied by an adult 21 or older after 4 p.m.