TAYLOR COUNTY—As the weather warms up, residents will be looking for ways to enjoy the sunshine and beautiful scenery that are afforded by the area, while still adhering to the social distancing guidelines in place. With the cancellation of so many other events, the Adventure Club is seeking input from residents about the fate of their beloved lazy river floats.
Guests from near and far flocked to the Grafton City Park, to board tubes and hit the cool waters of the Tygart River, during last season’s Lazy River.
“Last summer, we hosted over 1,000 participants from June until September. We had participants from 32 states and five different countries,” reported Adventure Club Executive Director Bryan Smith. “It was an exciting summer.”
That number of participants were recorded through their paid tickets, group sales, discount tickets and free passes that were handed out as gifts and the like. He noted that three weeks during that time, the floats had to be shut down due to water conditions.
“I’m sure that our numbers would have been higher if not for that,” he voiced.
Because the club’s Lazy River is a favorite among residents and is a tourism draw for the area, Smith is seeking the public’s input in the fate of this year’s float, in light of the current Coronavirus pandemic.
“The Adventure Club is dedicated to keeping people safe, that is our main goal, outside of offering a fun event for the whole family to enjoy,” he shared. “We are working hard on a plan to possibly be open this summer, but we wanted to hear from the community.”
He said that currently, the only restriction that would be an issue is that gatherings of more than 25 people are prohibited.
“Other than the large gathering restraint, we are not limited,” Smith reported.
However, he said that due to their separation from Project HOP2E and becoming a stand-alone business, the Adventure Club is faced with a financial burden this summer.
“We have limited funds to start the season out with, so we want to make sure we are making the best decisions financially as we can,” Smith explained. “Most of the funds will be used to pay for our insurance and then, what is left will be used for advertising purposes. Should those costs be paid up front and then we are not able to open or are forced to close down prematurely, it will cause a deficit for next year.”
So, in order to gauge public interest and involvement and to make a fiscally responsible decision, the Adventure Club has created a community input survey.
Participants will be asked a total of eight questions engaging their input on whether or not they would participate in the Lazy River this summer, a chance to expand on why or why not they would take part, if they would adhere to the social distancing guidelines, and whether or not they felt the number of participants should be limited, this summer.
The survey should only take a couple of minutes to fill out and can be accessed on the Adventure Club’s Facebook page, www.facebook.com/TCAdventureClubWV. The link will also be made available on the Mountain Statesman’s Facebook page, www.facebook.com/MountainStatesman, as well.
For those not on Facebook, the link for the survey is www.surveymonkey.com/r/2ZJTS96?fbclid=IwAR1fmoHUKEV4SCOXl_HEXerudR0bJjY1TTC8OWjj8kFaM7q6pGegYZEFjQs.
“This is a very difficult decision for us to make. We want everyone to have a great time together, but we also want everyone to be safe. The health and safety of those we serve is our number one priority,” Smith imparted. “Please take a few moments to complete this survey. Your input and support are greatly appreciated! Here’s to hoping we all have a wonderful summer on the Tygart River!”