LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's biggest theme park has called off the country's first "National Muslim Fun Day" because of lack of interest, the park said Wednesday.
Alton Towers in central England was to open on September 17 for Muslims -- with halal food, a strict dress code and prayer areas.
Music, gambling and alcohol were to be banned for the day and theme park rides such as "Ripsaw," "Corkscrew" and "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" all segregated by sex.
But the park said the event's organizers, Islamic Leisure, who rented the park for the day and were marketing the event, had called it off due to "insufficient ticket sales."
"Alton Towers is disappointed that the planned Family Fun Day Sunday 17th September has had to be canceled," the park said in a statement. A park spokeswoman said Islamic Leisure would refund those who bought tickets.
Islamic Leisure's phones were not being answered on Wednesday.
Organizers had hoped to fill a niche for Britain's 1.7 million Muslims, some of whom may be uncomfortable with mainstream entertainment.
But the fun day had caused some consternation: a non-Muslim couple scheduled to hold their wedding at the park's hotel complained to newspapers that event organizers told them the bride and female guests would have to cover up.
The park promised the party would be exempt from the rules. A park spokeswoman said the wedding would take place as planned.
I tried submiting this as news...but I do not think I do it right. It never allows me to put a link in the submission. The only prompt is "no link." I'm not sure it ever makes it to Jeff...or maybe my tastes are not newsworthy...? :-) *** Edited 8/4/2006 12:17:15 AM UTC by Jeffrey R Smith***
(...and the link only applies if you're adding news concerning a personal website that has been added to the Coasterbuzz Sites directory. If you have a link to a news article, just copy it into the body of your submission, and Jeff will take care of the rest.)