Route 9 in Fishkill was a bumper-to-bumper nightmare on Wednesday as people tried to enter SplashDown Beach even after it closed to capacity early in the day.

You could call it a perfect storm. Students across the Hudson Valley all had the day off from school during a massive heatwave. With temperatures flirting with 100 degrees, families from near and far all had the same idea, transforming Route 9 into a parking lot.

Traffic "Nightmare" on Route 9

Police were seen attempting to direct traffic on Route 9 near SplashDown Beach on Wednesday afternoon even after the waterpark had announced that it was no longer allowing anyone else to enter. Residents in surrounding neighborhoods say that desperate families unable to find parking were abandoning their cars and walking on foot to the waterpark, hoping to get through the gates to cool off.

Traffic was snarled as far north as Wappingers Falls with cars lined up at the traffic light in front of the waterpark. Those who needed to travel through the area say that they found themselves stuck in "completely stopped" traffic.

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Splashdown Beach Closes to Capacity

Just after noon on Wednesday, SplashDown Beach posted to its social media accounts that the park had reached capacity for the day. Season pass holders and day pass customers alike were unable to enter the completely full waterpark.

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Those who had purchased a pass on Wednesday but were prevented from entering the park were not offered a refund. However, the passes will be valid for any other weekday during the 2024 season.

More Crowds Expected This Week

With many school districts either closing or announcing half-days on Thursday due to the extreme heat, it's possible it will be another busy day at SplashDown. Those who plan to visit any waterpark, especially on a very hot day, should arrive early to ensure they aren't turned away due to capacity.

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