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Creation Museum founder says fundraising after Bill Nye debate helps resurrect Noah's Ark project

July 7 Noah's Ark Park.jpg

July 7: Plans for a proposed religious theme park called Ark Encounter, at the Ark Encounter headquarters in Hebron, Ky. Noah's ark will be the centerpiece of a proposed $170 million religious theme park that has been approved for $40 million in taxpayer-funded incentives, upsetting activists who think public tax dollars should not be used to fund a religious theme park. (AP)

The founder of a Bible-themed museum who debated evolution with TV's "Science Guy" Bill Nye says fundraising after the widely watched event helped resurrect its stalled Noah's Ark project.

Creation Museum founder Ken Ham says a municipal bond offering to fund the theme park attraction has raised enough money to begin construction on the 510-foot wooden ark.

Ham says the "high-profile debate helped encourage more of our ministry friends to get involved in the past few weeks."

Reached by phone Thursday, Nye says he is disappointed that the project would go forward and he hopes it "goes out of business."

Ham was speaking about the project during a webcast Thursday night. He says the entire theme park plan would be built over several years. The first phase with the ark will cost about $73 million.