Wildwater Kingdom at Geauga Lake closes permanently

Posted | Contributed by Jeff

Wet footprints splattered along what's left of Geauga Lake's property have evaporated into nothing more than a memory. When the sun sank Monday, it marked the final time for summer swimming, sliding and splashing at Wildwater Kingdom as the park closed forever.

Read more and see video from WKYC/Orlando.

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It makes all the business sense in the world for Cedar Fair to begin the process of selling the land and exiting the market. I am glad the waterpark held on as long as it did. I fully understand and support the decision. Even with WWK doing pretty well for itself the last decade, for most of us the place has been gone for some time. But still, with the incredible history of that property, one can't help but be sad about this.

It's sad and I'll miss it but at this point the whole situation has been like the longest open casket funeral in the history of ever and I hope they just finally are developing the land and not just leaving vacant half ripped up remnants of a 2nd park to sit. It's over so just make it totally, truly over.

This was a sad closing day, I grew up at this place. It's to bad a greedy man ended the history on this property.

All the location needed was some love and more people would've came, but o well someday I'll create my own history.

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Jeff's avatar

Which greedy man is that? Kieran Burke?

That location needed love alright... in the form of customers.

Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Phrazy

eightdotthree's avatar

Yup. Sandcastle in Pittsburgh continues to draw despite limited investment, there is no reason WK shouldn't have been able to do the same. The park is superior to Sandcastle in almost every way.

"there is no reason WK shouldn't have been able to do the same."

I'll just leave this here:


Oh well maybe Youngstown.... Nope, Canton....nope...

Waterpark in the northern US, with a very tight window to make profits....That's always a dicey proposition. Throw in lack of capex, uncertain long-term plan for the underlying real estate, and generally depressed economic area, and we all knew it was just a matter of time. Not sure what evil man you're describing (Looking for that villain in the Muppet Movie.....) but come on, the handwriting had been on the wall for far too long.

Last edited by CreditWh0re,
ApolloAndy's avatar

In the same way that water parks in Texas are basically printing presses for money, I don't really get a water park in Northern Ohio. How often is the weather hot enough that the average person will think "You know what? Today is a water park kind of day." Maybe 2 months out of the year?

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slithernoggin's avatar

It may in part be due to what the average temperature people are used to is. (That's probably an ungrammatical sentence, sorry.)

I was in Orlando some years ago and went to visit a friend for lunch. I was wearing shorts and a T shirt because, to me, being from Chicago, it was warm weather. The locals were wearing sweatshirts and sweaters, and the restaurant had heating units set up in their outside dining area, since to the locals, it was a little chilly.

So a temperature that would be considered cool in Texas could be considered hot enough in Michigan to have people packing Wildwater Adventure.

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Along the lines of what slithernoggin said, I was always amazed that the splash parks and water parks were closed when we went to visit the in-laws in Palm Beach, FL in October or early May. We were all about some water slides, but it was considered "cool" to those crazy Floridians.

Jeff, has the FL heat fried your brain yet to the point where anything below 85 is cold? 😎

But then again, what do I know?

I know I moved from Ohio/PA to Orlando eight and a half years ago and I still marvel at the locals who bundle up anytime the temperature drops into the 70s. I live for November-March down here when it is nice enough to spend the whole day outside without being drenched in your own sweat and occasionally you can put on long sleeves. I will still wear my shorts and flip flops even on those nights it dips into the 50s or even 40s, but boy do I get the looks.

As long as the water is somewhat heated, I love going to the water parks on the "cooler" days and having the place to yourself. In fact I plan to head to Wet N Wild for my goodbye visit sometime in November and will hopefully have the run of the place on a day it is "only" in the upper 70s or low 80s.

The one thing I will admit to, and I'm not sure if it is because of the humidity and moisture in the air, but colder temps can feel colder here. For example, 50 degrees in Orlando, to me, feels colder than 50 degrees in Ohio. And it's not because I'm not used to it anymore, because I go back up for visits frequently enough to be able to feel the difference. The air itself feels different, and colder temps to me just feel colder here.

Jeff's avatar

I've been here for three years. Under 70 is jacket weather, but it has to get pretty damn cold before I'll wear pants instead of shorts.

Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Phrazy

LostKause's avatar

I live in PA, and I will normally cancel my outdoor plans if it is anywhere over 85°. That's too hot to go swimming.

To hot to go swimming lol. In PA it's also likely too humid for breathing, that for sure.


According to this, Big Dipper's casket may finally be closed soon after the world's longest wake.

If that was a wake, they forgot the embalming fluid.

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Thabto's avatar

Just tear it down and get it over with. I think it's way beyond salvageable at this point. If they wanted to get it running again, they would likely have to replace every single board and all the electrical parts, which would basically be rebuilding it from scratch. As much as I would like to see a park there again, any chance of that is long gone. Just put something new in that place and get rid of that eyesore for good.


Yep. The time to campaign for "save the park" was fall 2007. It's time to just let go and say it was great while it lasted much like numerous other northern Ohio parks that are all gone. Nobody was likely happy when Euclid Beach, Chippewa Lake, Idora Park, Puritas Springs Park, Meyers Lake or Chrystal Beach closed but that's how the cookie crumbled and it's too late to realistically do anything now other than enjoy the parks we have left.

There really was no saving it. Cedar Fair had made up their mind and that really was that. This wasn't a Conneaut Lake situation where they needed money and intervention to reopen. Cedar Fair decided they no longer wanted to operate the park or offer it for sale as a functional park, and even a Presidential proclamation likely wouldn't have made them budge on making that call.

Jeff's avatar

That seems like a slightly loaded assessment. They definitely didn't want to operate it, because it wasn't making money, but I'm pretty sure they didn't offer it for sale as a functional park because no one in their right mind would buy it at a price they would be happy with. And why would they? A combination of three operators failed. The value of the relocated assets was way higher than they would have been trying to sell it as a functional park.

Jeff - Editor - CoasterBuzz.com - My Blog - Phrazy

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