Kevin Dumont is the owner (for now) of Liquid Planet, a waterpark he founded in Candia, New Hampshire. Facing foreclosure, he recently decided to chain himself to the top of a slide tower. “I’m an out-of-the-box-thinking kind of guy,” Dumont told Gawker.
Dumont started designing the park in 2003. “There’s no book in the library on how to build a waterpark. You kind of have to figure it out,” he said. After securing funding and finding a location for the park, Dumont opened in 2008. But, the recession hit, and it rained for two summers in a row.
Despite, he said, a favorable feasibility study and having over a million people within an hour’s drive, the park continued to struggle financially. Soon enough, the bank foreclosed. “We just couldn’t get out from under it,” Dumont said. An auction is scheduled for December 2nd. Now, he’s looking for someone to invest in part ownership. (He’s also started a Gofundme campaign.)
Coming back home earlier this month from the funeral of his father, Dumont decided to take action. “If no one can come forward, I’ll lose my house, my job, the money my parents gave me to invest. Someone will get it at auction, but who knows what they’ll do with it. It could be bought by big corporation.”
“It kind of just popped into my head to chain myself to the top of the tower and not come down until someone helps me,” he said. “I’m not too impulsive. Have been thinking about this for a while. I am unorthodox. Have to be unorthodox to start a waterpark—especially in New England.”
“It’s a little cold,” Dumont told Gawker. “But I spent nine years in the Army. Some of my veteran buddies dropped off some cold weather gear, so I’m okay.”
He plans to stay there either until a partner comes forward or the auction takes place in December: he has a tent, blankets, some gray Army fleeces, a sleeping bag, provisions, a charger for his cellphone, and a coffee maker. Oh, and a camper’s portapotty: “It’s miserable, but it does the job. I’m willing to do what I can to get this to work.”