Knoebels Closes as Creek Swells Inside Park

RALPHO TOWNSHIP, Pa. -- Knoebels Amusement resort was closed Monday after a significant amount of rain.

The creek overflowed and flooded a section of the miniature golf course.

Employees at Knoebels went into what they refer to as "flood protection mode." They took apart several rides and moved them to higher ground.

Brian Knoebel usually refers to the creek as a great part of Knoebels Amusement Resort, but sometimes it's not so great.

"When the rain comes, the creek becomes our worst enemy," Knoebel said.

When the creek started spilling out of its banks and flooding the miniature golf course, the decision was made not to open the park. Instead of morning ride inspections, employees went into flood protection mode.

"They just know. The guys, the girls, everyone involved, they just know what to do. Unfortunately, we're really good at flood preparation," Knoebel said.

Employees took apart certain rides and moved them to higher ground. The horses on the carousel are hand-carved and can't be replaced.

"Making sure that all the rides that are irreplaceable and at lower ground could be protected," said resort spokesperson Stacy Ososkie.

According to Knoebels officials, there are more than 350 groups camping at the resort. Campers tell Newswatch 16 they're making the most of it.

"We'll play games, watch movies, and it will be OK. We'll get into the park eventually," said Cherie Voorhees.

Voorhees and her family live near Philadelphia. They were here last year when there was similar weather and Knoebels closed early one day.

"All the creeks were so swollen. They were up to the bridges. They closed right after we arrived," Voorhees said.

"Above all else, we have an obligation of safety for the team, for our guests, for everyone involved," said Knoebel. "We have to keep them away from the creek. It was the right decision."

No decision has been made yet about whether Knoebels Amusement Resort will reopen Tuesday or stay closed. Management has been closely watching the forecast.

Update: Parts of the park were back open on Tuesday.

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