DENVER - Billed as the big summer party of Denver, the "2nd annual" Slip N Slide party was set for this Saturday. But, once officials with the Denver Parks and Recreation party figured out what was going, they pulled the rare move of revoking the already approved permit.
"The most recent 15-to-20 years, this is the only time we can think of that we have to actually proactively revoke a permit," Jeff Green, spokesman for the Denver Parks and Recreation Department.
Green says the permit was full of lies. It stated that the event scheduled for July 13th at Jefferson Park near 23rd Avenue and Federal Boulevard was for a barbeque. The permit lists the Humane Society, a non-profit, as the one seeking the permit which entitled them to a cheaper licensing fee.
"We contacted the Humane Society of the United States and talked to them about it, they're not a sponsor of the event," Green said.
It did not list a Slip-N-Slide as part of any of the equipment to be used. And, it stated that the function did not include alcohol.
"It was pretty easy to figure out exactly what they were planning by looking at social media," Green said.
Green says city officials saw a video posted online from last year's Slip-N-Slide party, which was broken up by law enforcement.
"It was doing damage to the turf. It wasn't permitted. We would never permit something like that in a park because of the damage it does to a grass turf," Green said.
The internet video, which included shots of people consuming hard liquor and using glass bottles in the park, invited people to come to this year's Slip-N-Slide party.
"It upsets us," Green said. "We certainly don't like to be duped."
Chad Huggins is listed as the one who filled out the park permit application. Huggins says he did not mean to be dishonest.
"It's the first time that we've ever thrown an event like this," Huggins said.
Huggins owns The Social Route, a company that manages social media for local businesses. He says the plan was to throw an anniversary barbeque for his company.
"We just wanted to provide people with an opportunity to go and have a fun time on a Saturday without having to pay for anything," Huggins said.
He said they would only ask people for a donation which would be given to the Humane Society.
"We had a goal to raise like $10,000 for charities," Huggins said.
He admits the form was incorrectly filled out to list the Humane Society as the sponsor, but he says that's because the donations were going to that organization.
Huggins says he did not say alcohol would be consumed because 3.2 percent alcohol beer is allowed to be consumed in the parks.
"Originally, we had it set up as (bring your own beer)," Huggins said.
And, he says he did not include a Slip-N-Slide as a part of the equipment to be used, because after reading carefully through the regulations of the Parks and Rec department, Slip-N-Slides are not actually banned.
"I read over the rules and regulations of what's prohibited. It's like jumping castles, fireworks," Huggins said. "It sounds like they are very, very specific about the things that aren't allowed."
As far as the video goes, Huggins says his company did not put on that party and the video and web page, and title of "2nd annual" Slip-N-Slide party was put up by someone else. In essence, the social media company may be paying the price for what another person put up on social media.
"I didn't feel like it was really completely fair to base everything off of last year's party, last year's video," Huggins said. "There were things that weren't done on a legitimate basis."
Huggins says he wants to fully support the city and understands why the permit was revoked. He says the Slip-N-Slide party is postponed for now, until he can find another location for it.
Green says the Parks and Rec department has learned some lessons from this.
"We want people to enjoy our parks," Green said. "But, when you lie to us, it makes it more difficult. It's going to make it more difficult for people that just want to have a barbeque now in the future because we realize we're going to have to change certain things on our application form to make sure we are getting the full truth from everyone."
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