Council 'shafted' reputable City Slider, chose Monster Slide

WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN: Hooning down the City Slider on Aussie thongs are Danika Gordon and Josie Smith.
WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN: Hooning down the City Slider on Aussie thongs are Danika Gordon and Josie Smith. Neville Madsen

THE founder of a popular water slide company doubts he will consider coming to the Sunshine Coast after being "shafted" in favour of the doomed Monster Slide.

Stuart Harris, of City Slider, said he had looked at bringing his 325 metre water slide to Caloundra before New Zealand's Monster Slide made a bid earlier this year.

City Slider has hosted successful water slide events across Australia, including in Tasmania, Ipswich and Kuranda.

Monster Slide cancelled its Caloundra event days before it was due to happen in May, leaving ticket holders out of pocket.

Its organisers said the event would happen in September, but even this is now off the cards.


What could have been.... a video of the Monster Slide proposal 


Mr Harris said he warned the council this would happen.

He said he had visited Caloundra, met with the Chamber of Commerce and was formulating a proposal to bring City Slider to the region when he was pipped at the post.

"I was approached by the council initially, we were the first company they contacted," he said.

"I was putting together the application paperwork and then I was told Monster Slide had put in an application from New Zealand even though they hadn't seen the street or anyone in the council.

"I was told the council would assess theirs first.

The council has denied Mr Harris's application was first saying the council had received a "temporary event application from Monster Slide well before City Slider's application was received".

Mr Harris sent the council officers and each councillor the background information on Monster Slide and the difficulties its events had been having in other areas.

Mr Harris didn't get a response.

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"I emailed all the councillors and staff showing their history and saying this event would not go ahead," he said.

"I told them to look at their history and then look at our track record. They haven't run a successful event, but we've been audited by workplace safe.

"I sent them the phone numbers of other councils affected to check it out, but for some reason they weren't interested in knowing about us.

"The council completely shafted us on it.

"They stitched us up and gave preferential treatment to a New Zealand company with no runs on the board.

"I don't know if we could do it now, with all that muddy water."


Monster Slide organisers have pulled out from their Caloundra event.
Monster Slide organisers have pulled out from their Caloundra event. Brady Dyer

The council spokeswoman said the council had liaised with "internal and external agencies and the assessment of the Monster Slide application "did not provide any reason why the application would not be approved".

"When this issue arose, the council tried to find another suitable date for Mr Harris and his City Slide, however Mr Harris advised he did not wish to hold an event on the Sunshine Coast," she said.

"Mr Harris is very welcome and is encouraged, to apply for a permit to conduct his operation on the Sunshine Coast."

But Mr Harris said Monster Slide had "destroyed" the event for Caloundra and no other slide company would go there.

"Teenagers don't know the difference between one slide brand and another," he said.

A Monster Slide spokesperson told the Daily they had notified the council "over a month ago" regarding the cancellation of the September event "due to concerns over viability".

All refunds have been given.

The spokesperson said the company had looked closely at the business model and the event "just does not make financial sense with the regulatory and operational costs taken into account".

"This is why we have decided to cease operations in Australia under this current model and will pursue another model that will be more viable".

Topics:  event monster slide slide sunshine coast council

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