But that comparison doesn't stand up at all. It wasn't a "great" guest area. It was the first waterpark, but in comparison to other water parks it was just a water hole with a few slides and some mild theming. In fact keeping the lake water they were using clean enough for people to swim in was a problem. Sure they could have fixed it, but they didn't need to. Instead they replaced it with a much better attraction. I'm sure we can all agree that Typhoon Lagoon was a far superior water park in every way.Why do I think it is an embarrasement? Well, because it is another example of how Disney lets a great guest area fall down the tubes, such as WoL. One can make the arguement that WoL is in a popular park and is easily visible to guests. However, the principle is not much different. RC and WoL have great potential to become something great. I would like RC to become a mini waterpark style pool for FW and WL. Just as the pool at the Beach Club.
If your comparison to WOL were to hold up, which it doesn't, the following would have had to happen:
1. It would have to have not been replaced with something better. The worst problem with WOL closing is that it hasn't been replaced with anything. Its just closed, so EPCOT lost an entire pavilion and received nothing in place of it. Its not like Horizons or World of Motion, where we may complain about what replaced it, but at least something did. The sacrilege of WOL is that it just closed. Nothing else. River Country wasn't just closed, it was replaced with a far superior attraction in Typhoon Lagoon and then later the second water park.
2. It would have to be in public view. The second sacrilege of WoL is that its right there for all of us to see every day, looking completely run down and closed. If River Country were easily visible from anywhere on property then I could still agree with you, but to see it you've got to trespass. Its an attraction that was replaced with something better and has now been completely hidden from view. Neither of which have been done with WoL. It sits there for all to see in its sad shape. River Country is no different than my old favorite attraction, "If You Had Wings". It was torn down, and I miss it, but you can't see anything left of it and it was replaced with something. Whether its replacement was better or not is debatable, but it was.
As an aside, here's a link to a good video of what River Country used to be like. It does make me miss the place a bit for purely nostalgia reasons but its clear that it would be a subpar water park by todays standards, and at times a bit unsafe.