Panhandle rain puts damper on local tourism - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: newswest9.com |

Panhandle rain puts damper on local tourism

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Amarillo, Texas - The panhandle's recent rainfall hasn't been a blessing when it comes to tourist attractions. We all know the rain has been much needed to help bring the panhandle out of the drought. But ask some tourist spots around Amarillo if they want the rain... The answer might be different.

"We don't open in the rain because nobody wants to come out in the rain. They'll be glad to get wet on the 'Shoot the Shooter' and things like that, but they don't want to see the rain fall from the sky," Paul Borchardt, president of Wonderland amusement park says.

When the rain falls, their doors remain closed at Wonderland in Amarillo. Two days last week as well as yesterday they were missing out on business.

"We'll we're what is known as a seasonal business. So, in the seasonal business you have to make your money during a certain period of time, which that amounts to roughly 130 days at the good. This year right now we're tracking for about 94 days," Borchardt says.

Which means Borchardt will be seeing a big chunk come out of his profits.

But, the rain hasn't been a hindrance for all tourist attractions around the Amarillo area.

"I think overall it really hasn't had much of an impact because we have basically everything that a traveler could want to see right here in Amarillo," Eric Miller, with the Amarillo Convention & Visitors Council says.

Miller says that includes museums, art galleries, and an abundant amount of restaurants. But one local attraction you would think also loses out because of the rain says it's been the opposite, Palo Duro Canyon.

"A lot of people like to see it when it's wet down here. So, it hasn't really effected us. There's still quite a few people coming in today. And in the last couple of days it was really great because we didn't get much rain and had nice cool temperatures and that really made it good down here."

Attractions like Splash Amarillo as well as the Amarillo Sox's, who had to close, plan to be up and running again Thursday.

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