ARNOLDS PARK, Iowa (KCAU) – Arnolds Park in Okoboji is taking extra precaution to ensure the safety of their visitors. This, during the amusement park’s busiest time of the year.
The Lake Okoboji area is preparing for a heat index that could be as hot as 103 degrees on Wednesday. Officials say this is the first time they can remember Arnolds Park closing due to the heat.
Marshall Doeden is the Operations Manager for Arnolds Park Amusement Park. He said the hot weather has forced some changes.
“So we ended up closing at 3 p.m. today [Tuesday], we went from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. So we cut that in half and instead of being open until 8PM, and then we close on Wednesday all day, from 10 to 8 we are closed on Wednesday,” said Arnolds Park Operations Manager Marshall Doeden.
And the decision to close the park came out of extra precaution.
“When you’re at an amusement park, you’re having fun, you’re sweating, you’re running around and it’s hard to keep hydrated during that time. Yeah we have water to offer and different drinks, but staying hydrated is also a hard time to do when you’re having so much fun you don’t think about those things. So it leads to dizziness, faintness and we just want to keep everybody safe.”
Okoboji Director of Tourism Rebecca Peters said that although the park will close all day tomorrow, there are other ways to beat the heat.
“We’ve got these beautiful lakes, great beaches, and it’s a perfect day to get on a floatie and just float in the lake and enjoy yourself. I think it’s going to be a simple process for families, they’re going to just adjust their schedules a little bit. Maybe they won’t be able to go to the amusement park this afternoon or tomorrow, but they’ll definitely get back out there Thursday when the temperatures are a little more enjoyable,” said Peters/
A small road bump in what’s been one of Okoboji’s most successful summers.
“This is by far one of the best years we’ve seen here and since I’ve been here in six years. We’ve had so many people come out and enjoy the park. It’s been a true blessing for us to go from a year where we couldn’t really have much, to now where it’s been open and everyone is staying safe,” said Doeden
Peters said Arnolds Park will resume normal operation hours on Thursday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.