In 2002, Fayetteville was all abuzz about the Ozark Adventure Water Park that was going to be built on 24 acres just east of I-540 and south of 6th Street. The developer said cooperation in
Mike Masterson went into overdrive for his friends, spinning a vision of the economic benefits. If our "local officials are astute," he advised, "they will act to ensure that this plum of a park winds up in Fayetteville." By his calculations, the projected bonanza would be "170,000 times $25 or so in gate and concessions equals at least $4.25 million, plus assorted restaurant, fuel and miscellaneous expenditures, all rolled over seven times before departing
Six months later, in May, 2003, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported, "Family Recreation and Development Corp., had originally planned to have the park up and running by this month, but they have not even closed on a piece of land yet." We were assured that "local investment bankers John Nock and David Lewis, of American Municipal Securities, have been advising the company on the water park," and the developer said, "It’s making some progress. We hope to be able to make an announcement within the next three weeks."
Less than a week later, Lowell Mayor Phil Biggers announced that the Ozark Adventure Water Park would be built near the intersection of I-540 and
Of course, we all know that the much ballyhooed water park never got built. A bunch of rich guys ended up getting richer and getting sued by their partners, a process that wound up this March in the Arkansas Supreme Court.
It's still not too late for Fayetteville to score a water park. John Nock could blow some smoke up the city administration and promise to build one at SouthPass next to Connie's 200-acre regional sports park he has promised to deed to the city if they will annex the property and approve his development. Or maybe he's thinking that eyesore of a bunghole the city has already sunk $3.7 million into could be a wave pool with slides coming down from the backs of those gnarly old buildings.
As for John Nock, we should just trust him. "As for the naysayers, can anyone recall any project in or around