Gunstock Adventure Park, a ski resort and theme park in New Hampshire, will be closed to the public until further notice, following a mass resignation of most of its management staff.
The outdoor park in Gilford, New Hampshire has been the scene of a major rift between its management team and the Gunstock Area Commission, a five-member commission appointed by the government group that oversees all of Gunstock Mountain Resort. The closure was announced on the Gunstock website and in a statement from park officials acquired by The Boston Globe.
“The staff at Gunstock Mountain Resort would like to extend their sincere apologies to guests who had reservations at the mountain this week, or to those planning to visit and participate in summer adventures,” the statement read. “They are devastated by the huge change in command and have a lot of questions about how to operate going forward.”
The entire park planning team, including general manager Tom Day, tendered their resignations at the July 20 Commission meeting, the statement said. Day publicly made the move after the management team, which usually sat alongside commissioners in meetings, was placed in the public, The daily sun of Laconia reported.
One of the five commissioners, Gary Kiedaisch, also resigned, supposedly out of solidarity.
Without its management team, the theme park portion of the resort, which includes ziplines and roller coasters in the summer, will remain closed for the foreseeable future.
“We are in the process of trying to understand, operationally, what our structure will look like here – how we can operate, what steps need to be taken to operate safely, first and foremost and efficiently,” said Jennifer Karnan, park marketing manager. Told The sun.
The rest of the resort, which includes the campgrounds, will remain open to the public, the World reported. Events scheduled at the resort, including the SoulFest Christian music festival, will go ahead as planned.
The park has been host to years of political and legal battles as state officials and lawmakers fought for greater control over the mountain through the Commission – filing legislation manage its budgetary procedures, threatening to remove members of the Commission, and to accuse some of these members of criminal activity.
New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu condemned the actions of state officials in a statement Thursday, criticizing the Commission’s “inability and unwillingness to work collaboratively with the management team.” He noted that the influence of state officials on the Commission has “lost the trust of the citizens of Belknap County”.
Sununu also referenced several Belknap County Republican lawmakers — Reps. Mike Sylvia, Norm Silber and Gregg Hough — and the commission members they appointed to oversee the park.
“These people made bad decisions, and until they are removed from their jobs and replaced by good people who recognize the wonderful asset that is Gunstock, the county will continue to suffer,” Sununu wrote.
Rep. Silber, who represents Gilford in the New Hampshire House of Representatives, dismissed the resignations as “the result of a well-orchestrated and well-funded disinformation campaign” to distract from upcoming financial audit reports which, according to him, would be “very harmful”. to the reputation of the resigning Commissioner, many former resigning staff and the Governor himself.
Silber fired back at Governor Sununu, continuing that he “inserts[ed] plunges into a controversy of which he knows very little.
Station employees have also set up a statement on Twitter, expressing their sadness at the state of the venue’s politics. They apologized for any inconvenience customers may experience as a result.
“Please know that we are as disappointed as you are and hope to see you soon,” the statement read.
Stay up to date on all the latest news from Boston.com