On Tuesday in Williamstown, Kentucky, the most famous boat in history just re-opened for business.
The Ark Encounter theme park, a $100 million dollar recreation of the vessel described in the Old Testament as having helped save all life on Earth during the flood, had its ribbon-cutting ceremony in preparation for the official opening on Thursday.
The project's director, Ken Ham, told The Christian Post the purpose of the exact re-creation of the legendary vessel: "To remind the coming generations of the truth of God's word. It's our way of presenting the truth of God's Word to the world."
Kentucky's Lieutenant Governor, Jenean Hampton, was one of the many speakers at the ceremony. She told the crowd of 7,000, "We are so blessed that this great, great attraction was built here in Kentucky, it's just an honor to have this here. We hope to see millions visit Kentucky, to visit the Ark Encounter over the next few years. I can't wait to see the inside," she added, calling it "absolutely beyond imagination."
Ham is hopeful the attraction will bring in not just Christians but people from all faiths, telling CP, "I believe you're going to find all sorts of people from all walks of life with all sorts of religious backgrounds who are going to come here and even if they don't share our biblical view, they can't help but be impressed by the structure, craftsmanship and by the attention to detail of world class exhibits inside. And who knows? Maybe they'll be challenged to even talk about the Bible as we do."
The structure was built to exact biblical specifications and spans 510 feet long, 85 feet wide, and 51 feet high. "The Ark measured 300 x 50 x 30 cubits, which is a volume of about 2.21 million cubic feet."
As CEO of Answers in Genesis and The Creation Museum, Ham made headlines back in 2014 when he debated Bill Nye, The Science Guy, on evolution vs creationism. Ham told CP that there's a chance Nye may even stop by for a peek at the colossal museum. "Yes, we have had a response back from him. I believe he is considering coming out here," Ham explained. "We've had a positive response in that regard, so we'll just have to see what happens."
Opening the The Ark Encounter event on the seventh day of the seventh month was purposeful, Ham explained. He told the crowd that Genesis 7:7 reads, "And Noah went in, and his sons, and his wife, and his sons' wives with him, into the Ark," which inspired the date of the opening."
According to the website, the exhibit features an animatronic Noah, adventure zip-lines, and an Ararat Ridge Zoo.
Footage from the ribbon-cutting ceremony below:
UPDATE: Ham posted to Facebook that Nye took him up on his offer and toured the Ark on Friday. Ham's post below: