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A man asked his local parks department to fill a lazy river with queso. Here’s how it responded

"They don't make nacho chips large enough to float on- it'd be a real Jack and Rose type of situation (obviously more romantic)."
Locals ride the Rollin’ River based in Charleston, South Carolina Charleston which one man suggested could be filled with cheese dip. 
Locals ride the Rollin’ River based in Charleston, South Carolina Charleston which one man suggested could be filled with cheese dip. Charleston County Parks, Getty Images

The Charleston County Park & Recreation Commission offers visitors plenty of recreational services: climbing walls, an equestrian center, campgrounds and a marina … but no cheese.

The recreation commission located in Charleston, South Carolina, recently had to let down a resident named Hagan Ragland, who pitched turning the park’s lazy river into "a queso cheese lazy river"

In a tweet posted Thursday, the commission shared an email exchange between one of its Customer Service Representatives and Ragland who said he came up with the idea while eating lunch at Moe’s Southwest grill.

He saw a sign that read "Hear me out: queso lazy river," which comes from a Moe's tweet in 2019.

The Moe's booth that started it all.
The Moe's booth that started it all.Hagan Ragland

“Our customer service team fields all types of questions,” the Charleston Parks account shared in the tweet, which shows the email interaction between its customer service representative Nick Epps​ and Ragland.

“Hey can you guys turn the lazy river at Whirling Waters into a queso cheese lazy river?” Ragland wrote in his email to the recreation commission. “We could all just float in the river with a bag of chips and a long twisty straw and have the time of our lives with that sweet sweet queso. Okay let me know what you think.”

Ragland's idea involved having the commission swap out the water in its Rollin’ River attraction with queso dip. Residents would have a chance to float their way down the 870-foot-long stretch which winds about the Whirlin’ Waters Adventure Waterpark located in North Charleston Wannamaker County Park.

Speaking TODAY Food about the email exchange, Epps (who has been working at the commission for over a year) said he checked with a coworker before sending a silly response. “It’s nice when we can have some fun at work,” Epps explained.

“Thank you for inquiring about us finally turning Whirlin’ Waters into the cheesy oasis we have all dreamed of!” Epps wrote in his reply to the request. “That type of event would certainly bring us a lot of business and we could even claim it to be an environmental marvel with using natural sunlight to keep the queso river flowing.”

Epps did go on to note that the plan to add the beloved comfort food to the river had more holes than Swiss cheese.

“There are a few things that would prevent us from being able to hold such a glorious event,” Epps replied, noting that there has yet to be a nacho chip large enough to allow locals to actually float in the river. “It’d be a real Jack and Rose type of situation (obviously more romantic),” Epps explained. Epps went on to note how such an event would likely become a logistical nightmare in terms of getting cheese cloths to fit in the lazy river’s drains and filters in order to “catch all the jalapeño bits.” 

“There may be other reasons, but I think those are probably the biggies,” Epps wrote towards the end of his reply. “I’ll definitely pass your suggestion along the chain-of-command just in case I’m overlooking a fatal flaw in our reasoning (more like seasoning, amirite?).”

MELT: Cheese Dip

Jan. 31, 201700:40

In an interview with TODAY, Ragland (who wrote the original request for a lazy queso river) said he hadn’t expected to receive much of a response from the commission. So when he sent off the email and received Epps’ reply roughly 10 minutes later, he was shocked.

“I thought it would end there,” Ragland explained. “I thought it would have been like, ‘Sorry, Mr. Raglan. We can’t do it.’ It really went all out. I mean, it was a perfect response … It’s very wholesome. It made my day. It’s making everyone else’s day. And I think Mr. Nick needs a raise. I’m gonna try to send him a gift basket of some sort. I said fruit basket at first and everyone was like, ‘No, it needs to be a queso basket.'"

Beyond campaigning for Epps to get a raise, Ragland said he's coined a term for the recent attention over his idea which has prompted locals to try to make the event happen. According to Epps, there's a local movement to make him the mayor of Cheese Town.

"Even this morning, like, the local news contacted me like seven this morning," Ragland, who works late at night as a bartender remarked. "I was like, 'Wow, this is getting out of hand.' I call it queso mania. Queso mania's running wild."