Between rock and a hard place - the demise of Stanthorpe Rocks
STANTHORPE Rocks is no more.
The husband and wife team behind Slydogz Eventz have decided to discontinue with the festival franchise.
Ian and Karyn Wade-Parker are the brains behind the Stanthorpe Rocks festival, which in the last few years has grown to include Towers Rocks (Charters Towers) and Rocky Rocks (Rockhampton).
Mr Wade-Parker said financial constraints had seen a premature end to the Slydogz Eventz rock festivals.
"We really wanted this Stanthorpe Rocks to be the big one," he said.
"We were expecting 3000 - 3500 tickets sold but the figures were way off were we wanted to be.
"This meant we had to cancel the super tent; it was either that or save money by not having the Hoodoo Gurus or Joe Camilleri and the Black Sorrows.
"But we weren't going to do that, because the music is the most important factor in the whole thing.
Mr Wade-Parker said he wasn't sure exactly why they didn't get the crowds they wanted.
"Who knows," he said.
"I think unfortunately there too many festivals in south-east Queensland these days.
"We've had a lot of people coming from Brisbane and the Gold Coast in past years, but now there's such a wide choice of festivals, catering to similar musical tastes that they don't have to drive three hours to go to."
Mr Wade-Parker said the decision to pull the pin was purely one of economics.
"We have the desire but can't sustain the enormous costs that go into putting on these events," he said.
"The music we've brought to the region over the years was absolutely brilliant.
"We didn't have any dud acts, just great iconic acts.
"And we did our best to mix it up and bring new acts like Adam Brand, who the crowd loved.
"Obviously we can't predict the weather and people got a bit wet but that's all part of the festival experience too."
Mr Wade-Parker said the economic stimulus to the region was immense.
"We turned a historically quiet November weekend with 15-20% occupancy in hotels around the area, to being sold out," he said.
"Not to mention all the local suppliers, vendors and community groups that benefited.
"As well as giving so many local bands a taste of playing at a big festival."
Mr Wade-Parker said he was very proud of what Slydogz had achieved.
"I loved putting on these shows, getting around the crowd and speaking to people having a great time.
"We brought our passion for music to the Southern Downs, it was a dream of ours and we achieved it, now it's time to move on to other things."