I haven’t paid much attention to Ken Ham’s recently opened Ark Encounter, because nobody with a lick of brains believes the Noah story is true, and the people who do are idiots that I keep at a distance; why should I care how they entertain themselves? But a reader sends a story that attendance is way below expectations, and that provoked my curiosity. After all, the success of the Trump candidacy tells us that America is in no immediate danger of running out of fools, so why can’t Ken Ham, who definitely belongs in the P.T. Barnum Hall of fame, siphon the budgeted number of them into Kentucky?
First, the story:
… the Ark Encounter has reduced their annual attendance forecast by 30%. But even the new number doesn’t hold up.
Let’s do some quick back-of-the-envelope calculations here: If the park has been open for 71 days and has had 300,000 people show up, that’s an average of 4,225 people each day. At that pace, they would get just over 1.5 million people visiting in the first year, which is roughly what Ham is estimating.
But that’s assuming the pace remains the same during the winter, when the weather is bad, and during the school year, when kids have other obligations. That’s not going to happen. The attendance figures will only go down for at least the next several months.
Watch this video tour.
Imagine it: Bubba Beauregard is there with his wife and kids. He’s spent more than $150 on tickets, and then there’s the gas and meals driving there; altogether, he’s out $250-$300. Bubba doesn’t brag about his education, but he’s done some roofing, worked on a couple of home-building crews, done some window-washing and knows a bit about scaffolding, and enjoys an occasional day in the woods hunting.
So Bubba is standing on the sidewalk outside the place, and do you know what he says to himself as he looks at that ridiculous immensity? He says, “Ain’t no way Noah and his boys built this mother. Did. Not. Happen.” And he looks at those rows and rows of cages — 3-levels worth — and recalls all the hours he has spent in a cold damp blind waiting for a deer to pass by, and he says, “Noah and his boys couldn’t have filled all those cages in a lifetime.” And, “How the hell did they snare a pterodactyl and bring it back to the ark alive?”
Then, “Damn. This is ridiculous. Those preachers have been lying all along, and just being here looking at this stuff, as though it’s true, embarrasses me.”
Ken Ham may be accomplishing what hundreds of years of education have failed to accomplish: He might be enabling even witless dullards to understand that there’s a lot of make-believe in the Bible.