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December 30, 2013

Worries growing about Indiana Beach's future

(Continued)

Moser, the CEO, denies there are any financial problems with the park. Without disclosing an exact dollar figure, he said he's invested "multimillion" dollars into Indiana Beach this year and that in 2014 the park will debut several features that he's not yet prepared to announce. He said the company has invested $15 million in the park since purchasing it five years ago.

Neither Moser nor Gallagher would elaborate on the round of layoffs the park implemented in late October, when about eight employees were let go, including Sherry Vogel, director of sales and marketing.

For four years, Vogel worked at Indiana Beach. Part of her job was to rebuild relationships with the Monticello community that were damaged in the early days of the park's new ownership.

"There were seven or eight of us that were laid off in various departments, full time," Vogel said. "It was news to me. It was shocking. There really was no reason (given)."

It was Vogel who was tasked with maintaining positive working relationships with local businesses.

For many local business owners, the town hall meeting Moser held in the early days of his ownership of the park remains the only time they've interacted with him. It's a jarring contrast to what residents were used to. Tom Spackman was accessible.

Moser said the park's attendance hasn't changed since his company took over. He declined, however, to provide any attendance figures.

Part of the concern is fueled by perceived financial troubles with Morgan RV. The company is a division of Morgan Management LLC. An online profile for Moser describes Morgan RV as operating more than $1.5 billion worth of real estate ventures.

In 2011, Morgan operated 42 RV resorts in 14 states and billed itself as the largest privately owned operator of RV parks and resorts in the country, according to an archive of the company's website.

Flash forward to present day and, after several foreclosures and the selling off of properties, the company counts just five remaining RV resorts in four states among its portfolio — including Indiana Beach.

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