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WhiteWater: Zoombezi Bay’s Baboon Lagoon Boosts Attendance and Revenue


Baboon Lagoon's IAAPA award winning AquaPlay RainFortress™ from WhiteWater, helped boost attendance and revenue for the Zoombezi Bay waterpark.

Despite unfavourable weather, the waterpark, which is affiliated with the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, broke attendance records this past summer.  John Gannon, the waterpark’s General Manager, attributes this success to the new AquaPlay structure:

“When you have something new to offer before the season opens, it encourages group sales and increases the number seasons pass holders. We experienced the majority of this revenue boost by promoting the brand new Baboon Lagoon, pre-season.”

WhiteWater’s AquaPlay RainFortress™ at Baboon Lagoon is the focus of the new area at the waterpark and has proved to be a popular draw for visitors, offering twice the number of waterslides and a more immersive themed play environment than the previous structure.  As a result of more guests coming to play, food and beverage sales in the area increased by over 10% in 2014.

Columbus Zoo’s approach in keeping animals from the same geographical region in the same area was the inspiration for the AquaPlay theming – baboons and the blue ringed octopus live on Africa’s west coast.  Gannon explains that WhiteWater then developed and refined the design, which was recognised with the IAAPA Best New Product Award for the best Themed Exhibit Design for Zoos, Aquariums and Museums:

“The Columbus Zoo design team came up with initial idea for the structure, but all we knew was that we wanted it animal themed. I give a lot of credence to WhiteWater and their design team for taking our idea and running with it. There were tiny details that they really perfected.”

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