The number of visitors and paid admission at the Carlsbad Water Park varied from 2021 to 2022 as the city and the rest of the world adjusted to a post COVID-19 lifestyle, according to data compiled by the City of Carlsbad’s Community Development Department.
The Carlsbad Water Park along with other city facilities were closed in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Operations resumed at the Water Park in 2021 as government COVID-19 mandates were lifted by the state and federal governments.
The park opened in 2016 and operates Memorial Day through late September, according to the City of Carlsbad website.
This year the Water Park opened May 28 and welcomed 2,800 visitors during Memorial Day weekend alone with the city collecting nearly $13,000 in paid admissions, read a Community Development update prepared for Carlsbad City Councilors.
In May of 2021, the Water Park welcomed 2,557 people and collected $12,000 in paid admissions, per City of Carlsbad data.
The city did not release attendance data for June 2022 at the Water Park. During June of last year 13,000 people received a brief rest from the summer heat and the city collected $12,000 in paid admissions.
Park visitation was down during July of this year compared to the same time in 2021.
This year around 11,000 people visited the Water Park compared to 12,000 the year before. Paid admissions decreased nearly $10,000 in 2022 compared to 2021, according to City of Carlsbad data.
The dip in attendance did not concern the economic development recruiter for Carlsbad and most of Eddy County, the Carlsbad Department of Development (CDOD).
CDOD Marketing Director Jeff Campbell said the Carlsbad Water Park is a key recruiting tool for out of state companies looking to open a business or industrial development in Carlsbad or Eddy County.
“It’s part of the quality-of-life picture,” he said.
Campbell said the Water Park was one of many selling points CDOD used in recruitment videos as the organization promotes Carlsbad and Eddy County.
August visitations the Water Park did not change from 2021 to 2022 with an average of 3,000 people.
Admission collections decreased during 2022 compared to 2021 with $12,000 collected this year and $14,000 collected in 2021, the Community Development Department noted.
Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway said the Water Park ended weekday operations in August as most of the lifeguards returned to classes at Carlsbad High School or a college or university.
The Community Development Department said weather issues in August of this year were the cause of the lower-than-normal attendance. Attendance data from September of this year were not released by the City of Carlsbad.
In September 2021, 2,000 people visited the Water Park and $8,000 in paid admissions were collected.
“In my opinion the more activities we can provide for the community and tourism the better off we are in the long run,” said Ward 3 Carlsbad City Councilor Karla Niemeier. “It fulfills one of the things we need in Carlsbad.”