It has been three years since a giant replica of Noah’s Ark anchored in northern Kentucky. And since then, there have been some big changes.
The big boat is still the big draw, but the Ark Encounter has added new attractions designed to enhance the experience and spread the park’s message.
Inside the 500-foot-long ark, visitors continue to wind through three exhibit decks telling the Biblical stories of the creation and the flood.
“We want people to know that God’s word is true from the very first verse, and we want to show them the reality of that.”
On Tuesday, the Mitchell family visited from Atlanta.
“It’s been fantastic,” Chris Mitchell said. “It’s a bit overwhelming when you first walk down and you see the enormity of the ark.”
“It brings it to life,” Lisa Mitchell added. “It’s one thing to read about it in the Bible … but to actually see and understand just the size of everything.”
To keep families like the Mitchells coming, Ark Encounter has expanded since opening day three years ago, adding a zoo, including camel rides.
“There are lots of things to, not just inside the Ark but also outside the Ark, including our brand new children’s playground,” said Dr. Georgia Purdom, the educational director for Ark Encounter.
The park just opened an ark-themed playground for kids. And for grownups, there is the Answers Center, a 2,500-seat auditorium with a 70-foot-long screen.
Purdom said the center, “allows us to have concerts and conferences and all kinds of venues here that people can come to, as well as enjoy the ark and the exhibits there.”
The park does not release annual figures but said attendance continues to grow.
“A typical day at the Ark: 9,000 people,” Purdom said. “And our attendance this year has been the best yet.”
In the near future, the park plans to expand its zoo. But despite the new exhibits, Ark Encounter said it will not compromise its very old message.
“We want people to know that God’s word is true from the very first verse, and we want to show them the reality of that,” Purdom said.