Here’s a quick update on Creationist Ken Ham‘s ever-changing attendance numbers for Ark Encounter.
You may recall that the Cincinnati Enquirer published an article on the second anniversary of the Ark’s opening in which they said this about the attendance figures:
Northern Kentucky’s Noah’s Ark replica attracted one million visitors during its second year of operation, officials said.
Answers in Genesis (AIG), which owns the Ark Encounter and the Creation Museum, reported a 20 percent jump in attendance year over year for the ark.
The structure, literally of Biblical proportions, opened to the public in July 2016 and drew about 800,000 visitors to Williamstown during its first year of operation…
I said a lot more about those numbers earlier this month, but the big takeaway is that Ark Encounter claims to have had a million visitors this year, and that was an increase over the first year, when they had 800,000 visitors.
That’s 1.8 million visitors in two years.
Those numbers didn’t match up with Ham’s previous statements at all. (We’re also waiting for public records to confirm attendance for the past several months.)
Now look at what the Grant County News just published in a puff piece celebrating the Ark:
Ham boasts more than two million people have visited the Ark Encounter since opening July 7, 2016, and attendance is expected to continue to increase for AiG’s sister attraction, The Creation Museum.
“We are so blessed to have seen over one million guests visit the Ark Encounter in our second year,” Ham said. “Almost all attractions see a drop in attendance after the initial excitement of the opening year wears off, but we have experienced another remarkable year. Numbers are even higher than our excellent first year, partly because so many motor coach tours, a 20-percent increase, are arriving daily.”
Now it’s two million?
I’ve heard people say that maybe Ham is talking about everyone who visits (including for free) while the “official” numbers only include paid tickets. But those two newspapers both said they were talking about “visitors,” not the more restrictive “paid” guests. Still, we get different numbers.
I don’t know what the real numbers are yet. I also know we can’t trust Ken Ham’s word; he’s a shameless self-promotor whose entire belief system is based on a lie.
The point is: It’s easy to find these contradictions. Ken Ham may not know how to do basic research, but this isn’t rocket science. He changes the numbers as he goes. We’ll know the real numbers soon enough.
(Thanks to Dan for the link)