Arnolds Park Trying To Raise Money For Renovations


Arnold’s Park at Lake Okoboji is 128 years old, but a group hopes to keep the park from looking its age.

They have a goal of raising $12 million.  $6 million will come from the public, and the other half will be matched by private anonymous donors. 

It’s a summer tradition, Lilah Garrett is experiencing for the first time. 

“Well, I hadn’t been before they made ’em,” Arnold’s Amusement Park visitor Lilah Garrett said. 

A trip to Arnolds Amusement Park looks different these days, according to Lilah’s family, who’ve been coming here for years. 

“It’s real nice, I’ll tell you that, it keeps on getting better and better these last few years,” Arnold’s Amusement Park visitor Chester Garrett said.

This summer, the park has added more parking and new bathrooms. Part of a three-phase update, costing $12 million.

“It’s a very local place. We need that in Iowa. We need more to do,” Arnold’s Amusement Park visitor Pamella Hughes said.

Anonymous donors have promised to match $6 million.  People in the community will pay for the other half. 

“The public, anybody that’s enjoyed family time in the lakes area should open up the wallet,” Hughes said. 

The effort has already raised $2 million. 

Arnold’s Park, just one ingredient Lilah needs for a happy Fourth of July. 

“Seeing the lake, and family, and friends,” Lilah Garrett said. 

Arnold’s Park is like a second home for the Garret family.   They’ve been coming here for 40 years, that’s a third of the time the park’s been open!

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