Wasserbahn staff say abrupt closure came while business was good

Published: Mar. 7, 2022 at 6:22 PM CST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) -Multiple employees at Wasserbahn say everything seemed to be going well when they were told to stop taking reservations. The waterpark and hotel closed suddenly last week. Employees say they’re still unsure if they’ll be paid.

”It’s stupid that the hotel closed. We were actually getting a lot of reservations lately,” said Samantha Peach, an employee who worked the front desk.

The closure came despite Smock Investments and Owner Thomas Smock receiving two rounds of COVID relief money for Wasserbahn. Records show the business got $141,500 in April of 2020, and then another $198,562 in February of 2021. Still, employees claim checks were bouncing.

“We noticed like so payroll checks were bouncing. He was bouncing checks to bands, vendors, we had a hard time getting supplies in because the vendors wouldn’t bring us any supplies because he’d bounced so many checks,” said John George, a Wasserbahn employee.

Meanwhile Smock filed LLC for ‘The Breezeway Bar and Grill’ in Cocoa Beach, Florida in January.

Employees at Wasserbahn say they haven’t heard from Smock regarding the closure. George hopes the state will investigate.

“Hopefully if they’re listening you can do your jobs and vindicate this for us,” he said.

The Iowa Attorney General’s Office says consumers who were impacted by the Wasserbahn closure can file a complaint with the state here if they wish. Employees who want to file a complaint should contact Iowa Workforce Development.

There are still some staff members living inside the building. One told TV9 last week, she isn’t sure where she and her two sons will go. They’re running out of warm water at the hotel.

Copyright 2022 KCRG. All rights reserved.