Wasserbahn Closing Updates Have Iowans More Confused Than Ever [Photos]
At the start of this month news broke of the Wasserbahn closing, many Iowans were shocked to hear the news about this waterpark closing. That sadness has been replaced with frustration and confusion. Since the closing many visitors and employees alike have come out online to voice their frustrations with ownership.
It appears as though almost no one, staff and customers alike saw the closing coming even after a quickly deleted Facebook post about the closing in February. According to KCRG the waterpark was not struggling financially.
The closure came despite Smock Investments and Owner Thomas Smock receiving two rounds of COVID relief money for Wasserbahn. Records show the business got $141,500 in April of 2020, and then another $198,562 in February of 2021. Still, employees claim checks were bouncing.
Though some internet rumors speculate financial mishandling, that has not yet been proven true. It also does not look like this location is just closing, but actually being demolished. It was reported,
In a brief phone conversation with someone at the hotel, we were told that a former operator, Thomas Smock, was allegedly delinquent on his financial responsibilities and owner Yule Park will reportedly be tearing the building down.
The website at this time still has a phone number and email linked to it, but that does not appear to offer any help.
We recently received photos of not only a closed waterpark but handwritten closed signs written on windows with a Sharpie!
Writing can also be seen on doors.
Tear down is already taking place.
An Upset Facebook Group
At around the time of the closure, a Facebook group was created calling out the hotel and waterpark for not giving a warning of the closing, and even worse... Reportedly not giving out refunds. You can learn more about that page here.
The Gazette reports the park closed following multiple health and safety complaints,
The Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals Food and Consumer Safety Bureau visited the hotel Dec. 7 after a guest reported seeing black mold in a section of the hotel closed for renovations since 2019.
You can find even more here.
It appears that since 2013 the park has had some on and off issues with a change of ownership at around that time. According to a 2014 article from the Iowa City Press-Citizen,
Under previous owners, the water park was closed after "numerous ongoing violations of state swimming pool regulations," the IDPH stated. The violations include "repeated failures to properly chlorinate the swimming facility, maintain proper water chemistry, and conduct proper testing and record keeping."
Wasserbahn Waterpark was an indoor waterpark in the town of Williamsburg. Located at 2211 U Ave, Willamsburg, IA 52361. More information can be found here.