By MARK EVANS
After encountering bad luck in its early days, River Rapids Waterpark has come into its own.
Construction delays allowed the park to only get in 38 days after its opening in the summer of 2019. It clearly showed promise, averaging 770 visitors per day.
Next, the COVID-19 pandemic hit and the park was only allowed to fill to 50% capacity. In 76 days of operation, the park averaged its maximum allowable under those limitations, 600 per day. That gave the park 45,598 visitors.
Now, the park has enjoyed back-to-back full seasons, without pandemic restrictions. The 2022 figures were announced during last Thursday’s county commission meeting. The park averaged 773 people per day for 77 days this year, for a total of 59,497 people.
“We were very pleased with the attendance numbers at the waterpark this summer,” Community Center Executive Director Brad Arnold said. “We increased our numbers by 2,000 customers from 2021 and did so in two fewer days of operation.”
The past two summers have proven the naysayers wrong who predicted the waterpark would be a costly white elephant.