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McWhinney Signs License and Management Agreement with
Great Wolf Resorts for a 600 suite Lodge with 100,000 sq ft
 Indoor Water Park  in Garden Grove, California

 
MADISON, Wis. - June 28, 2010 - Great Wolf Resorts, Inc.® (NASDAQ: WOLF), North America’s largest family of indoor waterpark resorts, announced that it has signed License and Management Agreements related to the development of a new 600-suite Great Wolf Lodge® resort in Garden Grove, California’s world famous International West Resort. The resort will be located less than two miles from Disneyland, near Anaheim and Los Angeles, and will be developed by McWhinney.

“I am very excited about this license and management agreement. With a sizable population within a 3 hour drive along with the close proximity to Disneyland, we have an attractive location for Great Wolf’s first California resort”

Great Wolf Resorts will receive license fees for use of the Great Wolf Lodge brand name and other intellectual property at the resort, and will receive management fees to operate the resort on behalf of the owner. It will also advise on certain development-related matters. The resort will be owned by a joint-venture, with Great Wolf Resorts receiving a minority equity interest for its development-related services. Additionally, the City of Garden Grove will contribute cash and bond proceeds to the resort, as well as establish a financing district to develop an adjacent parking structure.

Once complete, Great Wolf Lodge in Garden Grove’s International West Resort, will be a full-service, family destination resort with 600 suites, 30,000 square feet of meeting space, 100,000 square feet indoor water park and additional indoor entertainment areas and amenities. Development is expected to begin in 2011. The Great Wolf Lodge project is contingent on obtaining construction financing, typical due diligence, and permit and license approvals.

“I am very excited about this license and management agreement. With a sizable population within a 3 hour drive along with the close proximity to Disneyland, we have an attractive location for Great Wolf’s first California resort,” said Kim Schaefer, Chief Executive Officer of Great Wolf Resorts. “The area is already established as a vacation destination with domestic and international travelers so it allows us to continue to monetize the value of the Great Wolf Lodge brand, business model and infrastructure. Utilizing joint ventures to grow our brand footprint with minimal capital requirements will help us to maximize the value of the company for shareholders.”

Chad McWhinney, co-founder and chief executive officer of McWhinney commented, “We are pleased to be partnering with Great Wolf Resorts in developing a first-class destination. Our expertise as a comprehensive developer on the West Coast, combined with Great Wolf’s leading brand in indoor water park resorts, is sure to result in a successful family destination.”

“The Great Wolf Lodge will be the biggest attraction to be included in the International West Resort. This will be the most significant revenue generator in the City,” said Matt Fertal, City Manager of the City of Garden Grove.
 

McWhinney is partnering with the City of Garden Grove to develop an 11.5-acre water park themed hotel and conference center that is just over one mile from Disneyland and the Anaheim Convention Center. This resort hotel is planned to feature 600 rooms, a three-acre indoor and outdoor water park, 15,000 square feet of conference space and 18,000 square-feet of premier dining options.

A first of its kind for Southern California, the water park will be an exclusive amenity to hotel guests. Located along Harbor Boulevard between Highway 22 and Highway 5, the resort hotel is planned to create a destination location for some of the 20.5 million people a year that visit Southern California and the Disneyland tourist market.

Groundbreaking is scheduled for 2012 with construction completion and a grand opening planned for 2014. The 11.5-acre resort hotel is the first phase of a larger, 40-acre mixed use development that is planned to feature hospitality, entertainment, dining and retail. www.mcwhinney.com

About Great Wolf Resorts, Inc.

Great Wolf Resorts, Inc.® (NASDAQ: WOLF), Madison, Wis., is North America’s largest family of indoor waterpark resorts, and, through its subsidiaries and affiliates, owns, licenses and/or operates its family resorts under the Great Wolf Lodge® and Blue Harbor Resort™ brands. Great Wolf Resorts is a fully integrated resort company with Great Wolf Lodge locations in: Wisconsin Dells, Wis.; Sandusky, Ohio; Traverse City, Mich.; Kansas City, Kan.; Williamsburg, Va.; the Pocono Mountains, Pa.; Niagara Falls, Ontario; Mason, Ohio; Grapevine, Texas; Grand Mound, Wash.; and Concord, N.C.; and Blue Harbor Resort & Conference Center in Sheboygan, Wis. Through Great Wolf Resorts’ environmental sustainability program, Project Green Wolf™, the Company is the first and only national hotel chain to have all US properties Green Seal™ Certified – Silver.

The company’s resorts are family-oriented destination facilities that generally feature 300 – 600 rooms and a large indoor entertainment area measuring 40,000 – 100,000 square feet. The all-suite properties offer a variety of room styles, arcade/game rooms, fitness rooms, themed restaurants, spas, supervised children’s activities and other amenities. Additional information may be found on the company’s Web site at www.greatwolf.com.

About McWhinney

McWhinney, Loveland, CO, is a diversified real estate company that is committed to creating great places for people and providing fabled experiences to its customers. As its primary industry, McWhinney develops authentic master-planned communities designed for every aspect of life. Since 1991, McWhinney has planned and developed more than 6,000 acres in several master-planned communities and over 4.0 million square feet of commercial and mixed-use properties throughout the Rocky Mountain region and the West Coast.

McWhinney is a team of talented people offering comprehensive development services from acquisition and planning to entitlement and execution of horizontal and vertical development. As a national real estate firm, McWhinney excels in developing large scale master-planned communities, commercial and mixed-use development, acquisition and investment in land, management and leasing of assets, and public/private partnerships with municipalities. Additional information may be found on the Company’s web site atwww.mcwhinney.com.

Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and are subject to the safe harbor created by the Private Securities Litigation Act of 1995. All statements, other than statements of historical facts, including, among others, statements regarding the Company’s future financial position, business strategy, projected levels of growth, projected costs and projected performance and financing needs, are forward-looking statements. Those statements include statements regarding the intent, belief or current expectations of Great Wolf Resorts, Inc. and members of its management team, as well as the assumptions on which such statements are based, and generally are identified by the use of words such as “may,” “might,” “will,” “could,” “plan,” “objective,” “predict,” “project,” “potential,” “continue,” “ongoing,” “seeks,” “anticipates,” “believes,” “estimates,” “expects,” “plans,” “intends,” “should” or similar expressions. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks and uncertainties that actual results may differ materially from those contemplated by such forward-looking statements. Many of these factors are beyond the Company's ability to control or predict. Such factors include, but are not limited to, competition in the Company’s markets, changes in family vacation patterns and consumer spending habits, regional or national economic downturns, the Company’s ability to attract a significant number of guests from its target markets, economic conditions in its target markets, the impact of fuel costs and other operating costs, the Company’s ability to develop new resorts in desirable markets or further develop existing resorts on a timely and cost efficient basis, the Company's ability to manage growth, including the expansion of the Company’s infrastructure and systems necessary to support growth, the Company’s ability to manage cash and obtain additional cash required for growth, the general tightening in the U.S. lending markets, potential accidents or injuries at its resorts, decreases in travel due to pandemic or other widespread illness, its ability to achieve or sustain profitability, downturns in its industry segment and extreme weather conditions, increases in operating costs and other expense items and costs, uninsured losses or losses in excess of the Company's insurance coverage, the Company's ability to protect its intellectual property, trade secrets and the value of its brands, current and possible future legal restrictions and requirements. A further description of these risks, uncertainties and other matters can be found in the Company’s annual report and other reports filed from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including but not limited to the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2009. Great Wolf Resorts cautions that the foregoing list of important factors is not complete and assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking statement that it may make. Management believes these forward-looking statements are reasonable; however, undue reliance should not be placed on any forward-looking statements, which are based on current expectations. All written and oral forward-looking statements attributable to the Company or persons acting on its behalf are qualified in their entirety by these cautionary statements. Further, forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made, and the Company undertakes no obligation to update or revise forward-looking statements to reflect changed assumptions, the occurrence of unanticipated events or changes to future operating results over time unless otherwise required by law.
 
 

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Contact: 

Great Wolf Resorts, Inc.
Alex Lombardo or Nikki Sacks
608-661-4791

Liz Brady, 646-277-1226

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Also See: Great Wolf Resorts, Inc. Opens Tenth Location, the 390 room Great Wolf Lodge Grand Mound, Washington / April 2008
All Grown Up in Anaheim; Tourism’s Come a Long Way Since Disneyland Opened in the 1950s / Sandi Cain / May 2005
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