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Historic amusement park in Iowa to get $12M renovation

ARNOLDS PARK (AP) — Officials of in a northern Iowa city have announced $12 million in upgrades to a historic amusement park along a local lake.

The project on West Lake Okoboji in Arnolds Park includes construction of a new Roof Garden Ballroom, restoration of the Majestic Pavilion, expansion of the Iowa Great Lakes Maritime Museum and a lakefront boardwalk, the Sioux City Journal reported.

An anonymous group of donors has already pledged $6 million to the Restore the Park campaign.

Another $2 million has been raised through contributions from the Historic Parks Inc. and The Park Foundation boards, according to Historic Parks Inc. CEO Charley Whittenburg. He said a committee of current and past board members will spearhead the remaining fundraising.

The new additions and renovations will be completed in three phases. The first phase began last fall, with the Arnolds Park Foundation supplying funds to prepare the property for the upcoming improvements with updated electric, sewer and fiber optic lines.

The second phase is scheduled to begin this fall with the Maritime Museum’s expansion and the Majestic Pavilion’s renovation, which will include new flooring for the former skating rink and new administration facilities.

The third phase includes construction of the new Roof Garden.

“In addition, there will be many things upgraded to bring us into the 21st century, and poise us for sustainability for future generations,” Whittenburg said. “The park is the epicenter of our community and remains the heart of Okoboji. It is the iconic crown jewel of Iowa.”

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