Patoka Lake businesses want it known they're open despite govt. - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Patoka Lake businesses want it known they're open despite govt. shutdown

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The shutdown of the federal government has caused some confusion about what's open and what's not.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers built and owns Patoka Lake in southern Indiana, but the lake is operated by the state of Indiana, so the lake is, as one business owner puts it, "Open, open, open."

Kerry Lane is the owner of Gilligan's Boats near the lake, and wants to make it perfectly clear that the entire lake itself is open for boating and fishing.  He says the past couple days he's noticed the number of people visiting Patoka is down.

The confusion comes because the corps, due to the federal shutdown, has closed two small recreational areas near the dam.

Everything else in and around Patoka Lake is open for business as usual.

Lane says this is a good time of year to visit the lake:  "The water is pure and clean, it's beautiful, surroundings pristine, leaves on the trees are starting to turn."

Janet O'Brien, who rents cabins for boaters and fishermen, also says there has been confusion over whether the lake is open or not: "Oh, definitely, I do."  She says her business, too, has been down this week.

"We do have openings this weekend," she said.  "We do have some vacancies available, so come on out.  She says having such openings is surprising:  "We are normally booked since Memorial Day.  It's unusual for us not to be booked and for the traffic not to be booming on a Friday afternoon."

O"Brien and Lane want you to know the open sign on their businesses also means Patoka Lake remains open.  As Lane puts it, "We have warm weather right now, and we are open."

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