As we work our way through this pandemic, we have reached Stage 4.5 in Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb’s Back on Track Indiana plan, beginning July 4. The change replaces the previously anticipated step of moving to Stage 5 of the plan as the Governor announced a two-week pause through July 17 before moving forward.

Stage 4.5 largely remains the same as Stage 4 with one minor exception as it pertains to social gatherings. I have highlighted that one change in the guidelines below in bold text. The rest of the guidelines below have been in effect under Stage 4 since June 13.

Stage 4.5 GuidelinesHendricks County Re-Opening Guide

Some of the highlights include allowing these as long as social distancing guidelines are followed, which means people still need to be six feet apart and masks are recommended:

  • Social gatherings of up to 250 people
  • Sports leagues and tournaments for non-contact sports can begin
  • Restaurants can open their indoor dining to 75 percent capacity
  • Bars and bar seating in restaurants can open to 50 percent capacity
  • Museums, zoos, aquariums and other entertainment and tourism-related venues can open to 50 percent capacity
  • Amusement parks and water parks can open at 50 percent capacity
  • Stores and malls can open to full capacity
  • Movie theaters and bowling alleys can open to 50 percent capacity
  • Raceways can open to 50 percent capacity
  • Playgrounds can reopen
  • Festivals, fairs, parades and similar outdoor gatherings can occur with restrictions.

What Does This Mean For Hendricks County?Splash Pad at Washington Township Park Avon

Some of the obvious takeaways are Splash Island Family Waterpark, Gill Family Aquatic Center and all our splash pads and playgrounds can all open.

Our fairs and festivals can now occur as long as social distancing and other preventative guidelines are followed.

Outdoor Recreation

Our trails, parks and golf courses, which have been open for awhile remain open.

Waterparks & Splash PadsSplash Island - 1

As for our water parks and splash pads, all will finally open beginning July 4.

  • Splash Island Family Waterpark - The Town of Plainfield has decided to open their outdoor water park at 50 percent capacity beginning July 4.
  • Splash Island Indoor - It has reopened with restrictions including no open swim times for the public. The capacity for the indoor pool is 25 people, so participants must sign up for both aquatics classes and lap swim to secure a spot.
  • Richard A. Carlucci Recreation & Aquatics Center - The facility can now have up to 250 guests under the new guidelines, but that is all that will be allowed in at one time. The indoor courts will be open for basketball shoot around and pickleball only. The Playworld children's area remains closed, however.
  • Gill Family Aquatic Center - Our only other waterpark located in Danville is open but allows only 250 guests at a time.
  • Splash Pads - The splash pads at Hummel Park in Plainfield and Washington Township Park in Avon are open. Watermill Splash Pad at Williams Park in Brownsburg reopens July 4.
PlaygroundsAvon Town Hall Park playground

I checked with all of our park officials and all playgrounds throughout Hendricks County are now open.

Local health officials have stressed, however, that parents need to remain vigilant by bringing hand sanitzer, having their children wash their hands frequently and even having their children wear face masks if the playground is busy and/or they are in constant contact with other children. 

All parks have opened their restroom facilities, sports fields and courts.

Dog & Skate Parks

With the exception of the new Cardinal Bark Park in Brownsburg, all of Hendricks County's dog parks and the Plainfield Skate Park have reopened. The Cardinal Bark Park is scheduled to open July 6.

RestaurantsBlack Swan Brewpub outdoor dining

Restaurant dine-in services remain at 75 percent. However, state leaders have been clear that the expansion to that capacity doesn't supersede the six-foot social distancing that is required.

For more information on what every Hendricks County restaurant is currently offering, check out our easy-to-read and regularly updated Hendricks County Restaurant Guide.

We also have seen an increase of outdoor dining options because so many people still aren’t comfortable dining or even going inside a public place. Restaurants who have never or not always offered outdoor seating like the Mayberry Cafe, Books & Brews and Rusted Silo Southern BBQ & Brewhouse have added it in recent weeks.

You can find our recommendations for best outdoor dining options here.

Top Indoor AttractionsSky Zone

We checked in on some of our indoor attractions and found various reopening plans.

  • Beasley's Orchard - Beasley's barn market is open.
  • Kids Planet - The multi-level children's playground  has reopened.
  • Sky Zone Indoor Trampoline Park - Its Plainfield facility has reopened.
  • Hendricks County Historical Museum - Reopened with regular public hours of 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.
  • Hot Skates - The Avon roller skating center has reopened.
  • Royal Theater - The Royal has reopened for movies. Through the pandemic, they have offered take-home popcorn and snacks and will continue to do so. The bigger theaters in Avon, Brownsburg and Plainfield have not reopened.
  • Brownsburg Bowl - Reopened allowing five people per lane with every other lane open. Balls have been moved behind the counters. They will offer a half-price deal from noon to 10 p.m. on Sundays through July 12.
  • Sunshine Bowling Center - Scheduled to reopen July 25. When they do, they plan to allow just five people per lane, every other lane with balls will be cleaned before and after use. They will not offer birthday parties again until the end of August. 

Shopping & DIYThe Tie Dye Lab

With this new stage allowing stores at full capacity, we’ve noticed that many will cautiously do so. The Shops at Perry Crossing, our only full-scale mall, will allow their stores to individually evaluate their needs and plans.

Many of our locally-owned shops already have reopened.

Many of our DIY studios also are taking a cautious approach. The Tie Dye Lab and uPaint Pottery Studio have opened to 50 percent capacity. Summer camps and pottery to go also remains available at uPaint.

Lucas Oil Raceway

The track has a couple of bigger events coming up that will open to some spectators.

The National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) also has announced that Lucas Oil Raceway will host its first two events as its season returns on back-to-back weekends July 11-12 and 18-19 with limited spectators, primarily NHRA members and U.S. Nationals ticket holders. Both events also will be nationally televised on FOX.

Click here for more information on their schedule for the rest of 2020.