Great Wolf Lodge coming to Orange County

Developer looking at several locations, including Camp LaGuardia


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  • Provided photos Orange County Executive Steven M. Neuhaus announced this week that North American indoor waterpark chain Great Wolf Resorts is interested in building it's newest Great Wolf Lodge park in southern Orange County.




  • There are currently 17 Great Wolf Lodge locations across North America, including a popular location in the Poconos since 2005. There are also several new locations under construction, including two in Canada, two in California, one in Texas, one in Florida and one in Arizona opening next year.




  • “Orange County is an ideal location for a potential Great Wolf Lodge with its close proximity to New York City and family-friendly environment,” said Murray Hennessy, chief executive officer of Great Wolf Resorts.




BY ERIKA NORTON

North American indoor waterpark chain Great Wolf Resorts is interested in building its newest Great Wolf Lodge park in southern Orange County.

The family-friendly indoor waterpark would feature a collection of water slides, pools and play areas designed specifically for kids of every age.

Orange County Executive Steven M. Neuhaus announced the company's interest in the area on Wednesday.

“I've had productive conversations about this project with leadership from Great Wolf Lodge throughout the past year,” Neuhaus said. “I'm optimistic that they will choose to build their 20th waterpark in Orange County.

“Great Wolf Lodge is a respected, family-friendly venue and will complement some of the wonderful tourist destinations that are here or are coming to the Hudson Valley,” he continued. “This park would be a major economic draw for the region and reinforce the important partnership between our tourism and economic development efforts.”

Great Wolf Resorts' announcement comes on the heels of Legoland building its newest theme park off of Route 17 in Goshen, expected to open in 2020. Another large tourist attraction, Resorts World Catskills, opened in Monticello this year. An indoor waterpark also is included in the casino's plan.

Camp LaGuardiaAccording to Neuhaus, Great Wolf Resorts, Inc. is interested in a handful of sites in Southern Orange County. One potential location Great Wolf is looking at is the undeveloped, 258-acre Camp LaGuardia site, which is county-owned and located in Chester and Blooming Grove.

The fate of the former Camp LaGuardia homeless shelter, which includes a dozen dilapidated buildings, has been a hot topic over the last decade.

The Great Wolf Lodge waterpark and hotel would create about 500 jobs locally, Neuhaus said.

There are currently 17 Great Wolf Lodge locations across North America, including a popular location in the Poconos since 2005. There are also several new locations under construction, including two in Canada, two in California, one in Texas, one in Florida and one in Arizona opening next year.

“Great Wolf Resorts is experiencing a period of incredible growth and as we continue to expand our paw print with new resorts throughout the United States, we see the metro New York market as an area that offers tremendous future potential,” said Murray Hennessy, chief executive officer of Great Wolf Resorts. “Orange County is an ideal location for a potential Great Wolf Lodge with its close proximity to New York City and family-friendly environment. We're looking forward to continued dialogue with local government officials, as well as future engagement with the local community.”

The resortThe Orange County resort will feature not only the waterpark, but a host of other attractions, including ropes courses, arcade games, and MagiQuest, a family adventure game in which players use interactive magic wands. There will also be several restaurants and a hotel.

Chairman of the Orange County Legislature Steve Brescia said he supports Neuhaus in his efforts to land this project, calling it an excellent opportunity for Orange County and a major economic draw for the region.

“The fact that Great Wolf Lodge is considering coming to Orange County speaks volumes for the reputation that we have developed as a premier tourist destination and a County that is truly open for business,” Brescia said.

“I think this would be a wonderful opportunity for Blooming Grove, Orange County and the Hudson Valley,” Town of Blooming Grove Supervisor Rob Jeroloman said. “It will further enhance our ability to attract tourists to a well-established, family friendly venue. Although this project is in the preliminary stages, we are optimistic.”



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