Raccoon Mountain under new management; some workers laid off - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Raccoon Mountain under new management; some workers laid off

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An almost 90-year-old Chattanooga business is under new management and many long time workers are being laid off.

The Raccoon Mountain, a RV park, caverns and campground, is going through a major restructuring. Some former employees say it was a takeover.

The Perlakey family took over in 1995. A family feud and several lawsuits have resulted in employees being laid off and demoted.

Jeff Perlakey started working at Raccoon Mountain back in 2003; he says he did everything here.

“Giving cave tours, running the gift shop, working on the camp grounds,” said Perlakey. 

He doesn't have those duties anymore, and neither do some others.

“I disagree with the stance they are taking and it's unfortunate,” said Perlakey. 

He’s referring to the new outside management company. Perlakey says his brother, Steven Perlakey, brought in Outdoor Destination Management out of Memphis to take over the business after the family disagreement.

Channel 3 reached out to the new management company to get a reason for the layoffs and demotions.

“With any business transition, you need to assess what the needs are, and address them at the right time,” said Yale Spina, Chief Operating Officer, Outdoor Destination Management. 

Perlakey says it saddens him he can no longer work at the place he loves. He drove away with only his memories. 

“We put a lot of hard work over the years, to try to make this place where it is now,” said Perlakey. 

Raccoon Mountain Caverns opened in 1929. Cave tours for this weekend of February 20 and 21 have been canceled.

Channel 3 tried to get an exact number from Outdoor Destination Management on the number of people let go or demoted. They were unable to provide any further details.

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