Kentucky Kingdom and Hurricane Bay are getting new leadership. The new operator is Herschend Family Entertainment out of Georgia. Herschend describes itself as the nation’s “largest family-owned themed attractions corporation.” It operates several attractions like Tennessee’s Dollywood and the Newport Aquarium in Northern Kentucky, and they even own the Globetrotters. The announcement was made Tuesday morning at the Kentucky Expo Center with both Gov. Andy Beshear and Mayor Greg Fischer on hand. “Herschend is a proven innovator and leader in the tourism industry, and we are delighted that they recognize the potential Kentucky has to offer and have committed to expanding their operations in the commonwealth,” Beshear said in a news release.“This is just an example of the titans of the industry that are looking at Kentucky and seeing a big bright future,” he said.The company’s CEO Andrew Wexler said Herschend wants to continue the legacy of Kentucky Kingdom. He said they first saw the potential in Kentucky after taking over Newport Aquarium in 2008.Ed Hart, the founder of Kentucky Kingdom, spoke as he readies to pass the torch to Herschend. He said the company is the perfect fit because of its values. Kentucky Kingdom, which has been operating for more than 30 years, has faced some struggles in the past. It went bankrupt after its first season, and again in 2009, which closed the park for five years.The park was able to open some of the season during the pandemic with COVID-19 safety measures.

Kentucky Kingdom and Hurricane Bay are getting new leadership.

The new operator is Herschend Family Entertainment out of Georgia. Herschend describes itself as the nation’s “largest family-owned themed attractions corporation.” It operates several attractions like Tennessee’s Dollywood and the Newport Aquarium in Northern Kentucky, and they even own the Globetrotters.

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The announcement was made Tuesday morning at the Kentucky Expo Center with both Gov. Andy Beshear and Mayor Greg Fischer on hand.

“Herschend is a proven innovator and leader in the tourism industry, and we are delighted that they recognize the potential Kentucky has to offer and have committed to expanding their operations in the commonwealth,” Beshear said in a news release.

“This is just an example of the titans of the industry that are looking at Kentucky and seeing a big bright future,” he said.

The company’s CEO Andrew Wexler said Herschend wants to continue the legacy of Kentucky Kingdom. He said they first saw the potential in Kentucky after taking over Newport Aquarium in 2008.

Ed Hart, the founder of Kentucky Kingdom, spoke as he readies to pass the torch to Herschend. He said the company is the perfect fit because of its values.

Kentucky Kingdom, which has been operating for more than 30 years, has faced some struggles in the past. It went bankrupt after its first season, and again in 2009, which closed the park for five years.

The park was able to open some of the season during the pandemic with COVID-19 safety measures.

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