The roller coaster that is the Iowa Great Lakes Maritime Museum
continued its up-and-down spiral Friday as Cary Parker
and Tom Kuhlman submitted their resignations to the board of directors.
...Parker is stepping down as general manager of Arnolds Park Amusement Park, effective Dec. 1.His
letter of resignation was accepted by a vote of the executive board.
Rather, a lot of that was made in pledges through 2009," Parker
said."We made the initial payment for the park, but then started off in debt."
A total of $800,000 in pledges has yet to be collected, Parker
said."People misinterpret that that's $800,000 that people refuse to pay.The thing is, most of that isn't yet due."Parker's
resignation coincided with a detailed report issued by Jim Frost, a Roseville, Minn., consultant hired to analyze what can be done to get the complex on solid financial ground.
Revenues, according to Parker
and Kuhlman, are headed in the right direction.
"I don't want to negatively affect Mr. Frost, but in preparing his final numbers I was asked to e-mail some numbers to him," Parker
said, noting that one substantial expense was counted twice.
said the complex has gone from showing a $300,000 deficit in the year 2000 to at least an $8,000 profit this year.
Parker's reasons for resigning were detailed in a lengthy letter to the board of directors.In short, he
found it increasingly difficult to work for a board of 28 persons, some of whom he
said have a disregard for board policy.During the past 18 months, he
staff has endured eight authorized inspections and one unauthorized.
...Rick Johnson was elected president of the board Friday and had been on the job 90 minutes before Parker and Kuhlman resigned.
, who has worked in amusement parks since 1979, left the door open for his
return."It's a possibility," he
said."But because of the makeup of the current structure, I don't see it as a probability."
"I came here with the intent of accomplishing something positive in this community with this business," Parker