Ark Encounter is proving to be Kentucky’s white mammoth

Ark Encounter is proving to be Kentucky’s white mammoth

Officials in Grant County, Kentucky were so convinced that creationist Ken Ham’s $92-million Ark Encounter would lead to a major tourism boom that they decided to fork out as much as $18 million in tax incentives for the project.

The state also designated $11 million in road funds for an expanded interchange off Interstate 75 to deal with the expected increase in traffic.

But the tourists did not come in the expected numbers. Now the Ark Encounter not only looks like a white mammoth, it’s left Grant Counter “teetering on bankruptcy”, according to this report.

Grant County Judge-Executive Steve Wood ruefully said:

It’s been a great thing but it’s not brought us any money.

Grant County faces a major budget shortfall that Wood has said might have to be solved through a combination of a 2 percent payroll tax and job cuts to the county’s workers. Wood says that there’s no doubt the Ark has been a major disappointment.

I was one of those believers that once the Ark was here everything was going to come in. But it’s not done it. It’s not done it. I think the Ark’s done well and I’m glad for them on that. But it’s not done us good at all.

Writing for American News X, James Stahl labelled Ham “an ultra-religious swindler” and described the Ark Encounter as a “monument to Ham’s ego”.

He also pointed out that Grant County’s ecomomic woes may cost sheriff’s deputies their jobs. He quoted assistant Grant County attorney Julie Scott Jernigan as saying.

After June 1, sheriff’s deputies would have to be laid off. No one will answer 911 calls. The road department can’t buy salt this year.

Stahl added:

Ironically, the idea of the Ark Encounter spurred Grant Co. into becoming a ‘wet’ county allowing for the opening of bars and full-service restaurants. County officials were evidently surprised that nobody had jumped at the chance to open a bar catering to far right evangelicals.

He quoted Steve Wood as saying:

I’m shocked, I’ll be honest with you. We were told [the vote in favor of alcohol sales would] bring restaurants, particularly with the Ark. It hasn’t.

Stahl concluded:

Not surprising that nobody wants to try to sell booze to the same crowd that fought in favour of prohibition.

In the end, it seems Ken Ham has bilked citizens of Kentucky out of money. We will be sure to send our thoughts and prayers their way and hope they vote for some more intelligent officials.

Ham became even more of a laughing stock than he already was when he recently decided to bathe his ark in rainbow colours – not attract gay visitors but show that the Rainbow was the rightful property of Christians which had been misappropriated by deviants.

Hat tip: Matthew Carr

63 responses to “Ark Encounter is proving to be Kentucky’s white mammoth”

  1. remigius says:

    Ham’s folly was financed using the Tax Increment scheme.

    After this fiasco they’d be better off renaming it Tax Excrement.

  2. Newspaniard says:

    Forgive me if I ROFL!!! Har De Bleedin’ Har!! Perhaps the Americans aren’t as thick as I thought.

  3. barriejohn says:

    Just pray!

    (It’s THAT hair again, isn’t it?)

  4. AgentCormac says:

    It seems to me that Ham’s Folly is actually a microcosm of the whole xtian religion. It was built on blind faith by deluded people. In the end that faith was found to be entirely unjustified. But in the meantime the poor misguided souls had wasted vast amounts of time, effort and money on something that was nothing more than a worthless, pointless and meaningless distraction.

  5. AgentCormac says:


    Actually, it’s the make-up. Make-up that looks like it’s been applied by a blind man with no fingers.

  6. tonye says:

    To steal from Tusser:

    Fools (and officials in Grant County) and (hard earned taxpayers) money are soon parted…..

  7. Angela_K says:

    The tragedy of Ham’s farce is the millions of dollars wasted, money that could have gone to help people out of poverty or better still to medical research; but never mind, they believe they can pray away the cancer just like they pray away the gay – all without success. I have nothing but utter contempt for Ham, his enablers and the gullible fools who believe religious crap.

  8. L.Long says:

    Lets see this…a bunch of jesus freaks are sad because they (illegally??) financed a boondoggle that was a myth they believe, which has turned out to be a bigger lie then the lie told by the LIARS4jesus!!! Sorry but ‘we told you so!!’ just don’t approach the level of stoopid they have shown…so cry in your beer because there is nothing left to do!!!

  9. Brian Jordan says:

    As one of the commenters on the article points out, Ham’s Folly could be saved by the religious maniacs Trump has in tow. It just needs a whole raft of school trips run by emboldened cretinists.

  10. Cali Ron says:

    tonye: I prefer “a fool and his money are some party” (apologies to Tusser), but in this case the parties a bust. I’ve read on Patheos that they require employees to share Ken’s bizarre Christian beliefs so most of the employees live outside of Grant County. I think the headline for this story should be “Grant County takes on up the arse from Ham for Christianity”.

    Patheos story link:

  11. Brian Jordan says:

    Meanwhile, in the UK the creationists are getting hot and bothered about a new RE book, God and the Big Bang that tries to mix science and religion. Not because science and religion are mixed up, as one surely should, but because the “wrong” science is mixed with religion. It should, they say, tell the children that the stars were made three days after the Earth and that the Earth was covered entirely in water ready for Noah’s Folly.
    You can read Simon Turpin’s fantasising here, if you can be bothered, and imagine how it would be received in the USA:

  12. jack brandon says:

    I am sure since the ark is attracting hundreds of thousands of customers…hambo will support the co government out of the goodness of his heart. Ha!

  13. Broga says:

    We can’t afford to be too smug about this nonsense. How much creationist drivel is being taught in tax funded schools in the UK?

  14. Shame on all of you whose eyes have scales and ears have plugs. Some day you will know the truth of creation that is displayed at the Creation Museum and the destruction of humanity because of evil and disobedient hearts. Hardened hearts will not be responsive to the truth of GOD’s word in how the earth was created and how it was destroyed. The same evil runs rampant now. Wait, the storyline has not ended. You might be surprised!!

  15. Angela_K says:

    @Patricia Carey. Try trolling somewhere else and learn some science, there isn’t a shred of evidence for your creation myth.

  16. Ham has not brought home the bacon, and has screwed up bad with his ark lark. Time for this pig to stop telling porkies. These evangelicals would eat their own shyte for money, so, hopefully, this f–k up will help slaughter this particular swine’s reputation. Still, the rainbow-hued dinosaurs were quite nice I suppose….

  17. The animals went in two by two
    Hurrah! Hurrah!
    The animals went in two by two
    Hurrah! Hurrah!
    The animals went in two by two
    The brontosaurus, the triceratops and the kangaroo
    And they all went into the ark
    For to keep out of the rain.

  18. Patricia Carey, “Shame on all you whose eyes have scales and ears have plugs”? You should try using a butt-plug, my dear. It might do you some good. It will remove the scales from your eyes, the plugs from your ears, and reveal to you the Truth of atheism!

  19. Jeremy says:

    I was off by a few months I predicted it would go under in 8 months. Next time Kentucky keep separate church and state.

  20. 1859 says:

    Now we have trolls eating trolls….

  21. Trevor Blake says:

    “The Curse of Ham is a misnomer for the curse upon Canaan that was imposed by the biblical patriarch Noah. The curse occurs in the Book of Genesis and concerns Noah’s drunkenness and the accompanying shameful act perpetrated by his son Ham, the father of Canaan (Gen. 9:20–27).”

  22. Florida Bill says:

    Ham’s Ark………Neither Sea-Worthy nor See-Worthy.

  23. 1859 says:

    @Patricia Carey: Your stance is extremely arrogant, and arrogance is a typical symptom of a closed mind and a ‘hardened’ heart. My heart – and probably those of most other atheists – is certainly not ‘hardened’ because our minds are wide, wide open. Only those with closed minds have hearts like cement. Try to think outside your biblical box, you will find it surprisingly refreshing.

  24. Karyn says:

    We visited the Arc opening day 7/7/16. It was beautiful and interesting. LOOKING forward to returning again when it is completed. Whatever your beliefs it was an awesome experience AND Certainly something to see in a beautiful part of Kentucky. Have an open mind and do not let anyone try to poison It! Be your own leader

  25. Karyn Pharrow says:

    Give great reviews and do not discourage Hint! Hint!!

  26. tonye says:

    @Cali Ron,

    Cheers for the link.

  27. Paul says:

    Patricia Carey
    There are 44,000 or so Christian religions on this planet, made up by people.
    Therefore, I would be interested to learn exactly which ONE gawd you refer to, and which is the ONE true religion this ‘gawd’ represents – as like others here, I’m having difficulty understanding your point.

  28. barriejohn says:

    Patricia Carey has a point. When I became a Real Born-Again Christian™, almost 60 years ago now, the Second Coming of Jesus was “imminent”. If that’s the case, just think how close we must be to the great event now!

  29. Laura Roberts says:

    In truth, on first read I couldn’t tell if @PatriciaCarey was a Christian, a Muslim or a Poe. I’m still not entirely sure, but my guess is that’s the first and last we’ll hear from that particular little pixie.

  30. barriejohn says:

    Laura: Definitely a Christian.

    Christian Patricia Carey = Parasitic irritancy ache

  31. AgentCormac says:

    ‘Now we have trolls eating trolls….’

    Indeed we do.

  32. Brian Jordan says:

    Perhaps we should not mock – maybe the lady is related to Archbishop “Old Mother” Carey and has received Higher Knowledge.
    Talking of Carey, was or wasn’t that the Archbishop whose wife who upset the flock by being photographed draped over a piano? Google seems to remember nothing of it but I don’t think I’m imagining it.

  33. andym says:

    …or a troll trolling itself.

  34. barriejohn says:

    Brian Jordan: No – that was Robert Runcie’s fun-loving spouse!

    She confessed that she was “not terribly religious”, famously remarking that “too much religion makes me go pop!” Sermons “switched her off”; she could not bear the sound of church bells; and she had little time for “running round the parish dispensing calves-foot jelly, whatever that is”…

    The tabloid campaign against him soon began to focus on his “bizarre” marriage, with one newspaper splashing privately-taken photographs of Rosalind Runcie, including one of her in evening dress draped, vamp-like, across a piano, and another in a swimsuit. The implication was that the marriage was breaking up, and that Runcie should resign as archbishop.

    Well worth a read – with more people like her the Church of England might not be in the state in which it finds itself today, but they just don’t fit.

  35. barriejohn says:

    PS No luck locating photos. They were published in the Daily Star if anyone’s interested.

  36. Brian Jordan says:

    Thanks barriejohn. Carey’s wife is Eileen and Google has reams of quite ordinary photographs of a pianist of that name. Apologies to wife and pianist! Mea culpa.

  37. Thought For The Day:

    Troll not lest ye be trolled in turn.

  38. Angela_K says:

    Miss FBR. I see you are over on the Daily Express trying to educate the ignorant.I use a different user name there.

  39. tom80 says:

    I can never understand why so many Christians get so agitated about the creation vs evolution debate. The mainstream Christian churches accept evolution and seem to be ok with it. I also note that it was a Belgium Catholic Priest who first proposed the “big bang” theory-His name was Georges Lemaitre. I once had a discussion with my Priest about this and we came to the conclusion that evolution was totally acceptable within the catholic faith. We also thought that creationists-if that’s the right term-did more harm than good for Christianity as they cam across as a bit dotty

  40. Now that his Ark has been scuppered, I wonder if the ham-fisted Ham, his eyes dissolving in a…flood…of bitter tears, will have the good grace to do away with himself? If not, he can always join the Westboro Baptist Church. Ma is gettin’ awful lonesome with Pa long gone and her flock having long since flown the nest. Failing this, the Moonies are always on the lookout for new converts…..

  41. Angela_K says:

    @Tom80. I suggest that many Christians fear the evidence that supports evolution because it contradicts their bible and that it may lead down that slippery slope of questioning the rest of their bible and losing their faith [I wish]. At 14 I found the things I was being taught in RE contradicted the Biology, Physics and Chemistry I was being taught so it didn’t take me long to realise that religion is just wishful thinking.

  42. barriejohn says:

    What about Gregor Mendel, the father of modern genetics? I well remember first hearing about him in Biology class and thinking what a brilliant man he was. When I was a Christian we had a very large number of “young people” attending the church (many the children of believers and their friends), and some of us wanted some speakers who were science-literate booked to show them, in some special meetings, how belief in evolution, etc, could be reconciled with belief in the scriptures. Need I tell you that this suggestion was met with horror and the claim that we were “encouraging them to doubt the Word of God”!

  43. Angela_K says:

    @barriejohn. Good point. The religious often use the fact that some scientists of history were Christians as stick to beat us with, as though just because some possess the cognitive dissonance required to be religious and a scientist validates their religion.

  44. Cali Ron says:

    barriejohn: ‘Christian Patricia Carey = Parasitic irritancy ache’-you could just drop the Patricia Carey part and it still applies.

  45. remigius says:

    Cali Ron. Once you get rid of Patricia Carey all that remains is nitric ash.

  46. Paul says:

    Faith, religion, gawd has absolutely no place in science at all. The two are incompatible.
    Have a read of Jerry Coyne’s new book Faith Versus Fact, where he examines the debate and explains why they are incompatible. And also why so many scientists allow the ‘religious’ to enter into the scientific debate.
    And to say that religion and evolution are part of gawds plan or are compatible is simply ridiculous and facile. It isn’t. Evolution is a proven fact – creation is not, it is a construct of a very lazy and immature mind.

  47. Cali Ron says:

    It’s not a pretty site when trolls devour their own, but it does have a certain morbid entertainment value.

    Another Troll Has Gone Astray

    Whilst trolling on the net one day
    Another troll came my way
    I gave a trollish poke
    Provocateur blasphemy he spoke
    Another troll has gone astray

    So I set to the task
    Of saving the misguided lass
    My word, you must have misspoke
    It’s a trolls purpose to provoke
    Another troll has gone astray

    He responded in time
    Being most annoyingly kind
    Like you I used to be an ass
    But my conscience I found at last
    Another troll has gone astray

  48. Cali Ron says:

    remigius: That’s funny.

  49. Cali Ron says:

    remigius: Thanks.

  50. Francois Schwartz says:

    Hi all you atheists, just remember that you still have time to repent and follow Jesus as the bible is the only book that has over 6000 prophecies, (sure you clever people ) know this making the WORD OF GOD superseding all “other” fableish nonsense.