ELK CITY STAFF WORKING TO RESTORE ‘DROWNED’ STATE PARK
Park closure to continue until basic infrastructure can be replaced
ELK CITY STATE PARK – Out of commission since near-record flood waters covered it up in June, Elk City State Park is slowly being pieced back together so it can be opened in the next few weeks.
“We’d like to have at least some of the park open for Labor Day weekend, but it’s still an ‘iffy’ situation,” said Park Manager Chris Hammerschmidt. For safety considerations, though, the park will remain closed until some critical park facilities can be replaced or repaired.
Heavy late-June rains flooded many locations in southeast Kansas. Elk City Reservoir peaked at 34 feet above conservation pool – one foot short of the lake’s all-time high. About 90 percent of the 857-acre park was covered with water, Hammerschmidt said. All but 20 of the park’s 150 campsites were inundated to some degree.
The park’s main shower house had five feet of water in it, and two separate toilet facilities were completely submerged. Those facilities, as well as the park office, are not useable until a destroyed lift station is replaced. Also, breakers and receptacles for 76 50-amp campsites and 20 30-amp campsites must be replaced before electrical power can be restored.
“We appreciate the patience of our patrons,” Hammerschmidt said. “We’re working as quickly and efficiently as we can to get Elk City State Park back in business.”