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Arizona wildlife park business jumps during Canyon shutdown

PHOENIX — A sign at the entrance to Bearizona with a wolf sleeping reads “While Government Sleeps, We Keep Working.”

Bearizona Wildlife Park in Williams has become a busy tourist attraction since Grand Canyon National Park closed. Vanessa Stoffel with Bearizona said business has jumped by 25 percent this week but she knows this can’t last.

“Our fear is that, if the shutdown continues for another week or two, people will just wait until the Grand Canyon opens to come to this area,” she said.

Stoffel said the shutdown boosting their business isn’t cause for celebration: their neighbors to the north in Tusayan are losing tens of thousands of dollars each day of the shutdown.

“This is killing them. They’re an hour off of I-40 and it’s going to be felt more,” Stoffel said.

Meanwhile, Arizona Snowbowl is running chairlifts to the top of the San Francisco Peaks outside of Flagstaff. The Grand Canyon is visible from the sky lift. Adult tickets cost $15.