Family accuses Lee’s Summit water park of racism

Published: Aug. 7, 2022 at 10:22 PM CDT
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JACKSON COUNTY, MO (KCTV) -- A family is highly upset with a Lee’s Summit water park after their event they paid for was cancelled as they were arriving.

“They are up and coming community leaders and what picture are you painting them, they want to do good for their community,” says Chris Evans.

That’s exactly what Evans thought his kids were doing to celebrate their son Isaiah’s 17th birthday.

The kids decided they wanted to spend their personal money to invite 250 friends to a private pool party at Summit Waves in Lee’s Summit.

“So, about a month ago we went to Summit Waves, signed a contract for 250 kids to go out and play and enjoy the water park for two hours,” says Evans.

When they arrived to the park Saturday with their guests, the Evans family say they were being denied access to the park and were told their event was cancelled.

It was an exchange that was partially caught on camera.

Evans talking to a Park official stating, “You are cancelling a kids birthday party because you’re not comfortable.

The Park officials responded, “Yes”.

Evans asked, “What are you uncomfortable about?”

As she began to answer, the person recording says, “because we’re black”.

The park official is heard responding, “No”.

The official from the park went on to say before the video ended that the number of people the event had reached was a concern.

Which Evans says there was only going to be 250 people, the amount listed on the signed contract.

“In your contract it says capacity 250, if you can’t handle 250 don’t sell that product,” says Evans.

They also hired a photographer and private security including an armed guard as an extra safety measure for the large event.

“They go to school, there’s security guards, there’s metal detectors. I want my kids to be safe,” says Evans.

Since the family hasn’t heard back from Summit Waves explaining what happened, they believe it was a decision made based on their race.

“If you want to be in an environment where you want to host kids and have a good time, you need to understand kids, you can’t be fearful of your customers,” says Evans.

The water park is a part of the city’s Parks and Recreation Department.

A city representative reached back out to KCTV5 and released a statement about the incident saying, “Lee’s Summit Parks and Recreation is looking into the incident now after being made aware of a possible situation that happened Saturday night at Summit Waves.”

“I won’t be at Summit Waves ever, my grandkids won’t be at Summit Waves, my great grandkids won’t be at Summit Waves, it’s just a fact, it’s principle at this point. If you don’t want us there, I don’t want to be there,” says Evans.