LIMA — After 32 years of providing entertainment to families in the Lima region, Squirty Worm has closed its doors for good.
Sunday marked the final day for Squirty Worm, a sports park that featured go-karts, bumper boats and miniature golf. The business announced the decision to close on its Facebook page Monday afternoon. The account has since been deleted.
Owner Victoria Strickland declined to comment on why she decided to close the business, though she did say it was not for financial reasons.
“All I’m going to say is I want to thank everybody for the last 32 years,” Strickland said.
Strickland said it was a “very hard decision” to close. She became visibly emotional when asked about the memories she had at the sports park.
“There’s a lot of memories,” she said as tears streamed down her face.
The business has been owned by Strickland and her family since it was constructed in Lima more than three decades ago. Before it was a sports park, Squirty Worm was a six-bay car wash.
In 1980, Strickland’s father, Norman Greber, added a go-kart track to the adjacent property the self-serve car wash sat on, Strickland said in a previous article in The Lima News. Strickland’s brother-in-law, who was a go-kart fan at the time, had the idea to build the track. Since the first go-karts raced around the track, the park expanded into the Little Squirt Sports Park and lost the original car wash.
After the go-kart track was put in, the park kept growing with batting cages, miniature golf courses, a family fun center, bumper boats and an ice cream parlor. Strickland eventually branched out into property ownership, renting out rooms to college students in a building located on the property.
What’s to become of Squirty Worm is unclear, as Strickland also declined to comment on the future of the sports park and the student living center. However, Strickland did want to express her appreciation to the community.
“Thank you, Lima,” she said.
Reach John Bush at 567-242-0456 or on Twitter @bush_lima.