Athens County Commissioner Hopeful About Future Of Burr Oak Lodge

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Athens County Commissioner Larry Payne says he's not giving up on the Burr Oak Lodge yet.

Payne says he plans to meet with state and local officials to talk about ways to keep the lodge open.

The lodge is scheduled to close at the end of January and 45 people will be losing their jobs.

Payne says he wants to work to get more people interested in renting the lodge.

'We're concerned for the loss of jobs to Athens County obviously, but we're encouraged that they are going to keep 10 people and hopefully we'll come up with a long term solution that'll make the park a destination again," says Payne.

Ohio Department of Natural Resources Spokeswoman Laura Jones says the department needs to find a new business model for the 60-room lodge, which has been losing money.

Jones says the state will take into account the changing tastes of park visitors, who now want more adventure activities such as zip lines and paintball.

She also says the 44-year-old lodge needs repairs but right now there's no money.

The closing is being described as a temporary move.