UPDATED Romantic Asheville: Giant water slide event for set for downtown Asheville canceled


An event scheduled for May that would have brought a 1,000-long water slide to downtown Asheville has been canceled, according to the local tourist-centric website Romantic Asheville:

Update: CANCELLED. This was originally planned for Asheville on May 23, 2015. However, state regulations have prevented the one day set up of the slide. Long story.

The plan, as I understood it, was to put the slide on Coxe Avenue for the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend. Proceeds from the event were going to benefit the Asheville Parks and Greenways Foundation.

Mark at Romantic Asheville emailed me a letter he obtained in which James  A. Hayes, program supervisor of the pools, tattoos and state institutions branch of the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services Division of Public Health to Brad Behle of Slide the City. The slide, the way it is constructed, would violate state rules regulating swimming pools, Hayes wrote Behle.

Specifically the use of a landing pool to capture and reuse slide water makes the feature an artificial body of water subject to regulation as a public swimming pool and the current pool and recirculation system fail to meet the materials of construction, safety and operational requirements for waterslide landing pools in this state. …

I know it is your wish to bring Slide the City to North Carolina, but I doubt the requirements for a landing pool can be easily met with a portable pool, particularly because of the bathhouse requirement. One option may be to eliminate the landing pool and provide a run out at the end of the slide where the water drains to a tank where bather access is restricted. This would need to meet the requirements for recirculation tanks for interactive water play attractions in rule .2543(d). Interactive water play attractions in public places are not required to meet the bathhouse and fencing requirements and would not have to meet the materials of construction, deck requirements and suction hazard reduction requirements of a landing pool. The recirculation tank would need a surface skimmer, strainer, pump, filter, automatic chemical controller, chemical feeders, equipment room and chemical storage room, but those could be mobilized on a trailer.

Here’s the original press release I received from organizers on Jan. 14. I’ll post more when I have it.

City streets will get a slippery makeover in more than 150 cities around the world when Slide the CityTM goes on tour with 1,000+ feet of padded vinyl. Turning hills into water-sliding thrills is the goal of the event, which was created in an effort to get peopleoutside, having fun, and connecting with their community.

“We spend so much time walking, running, or driving around our cities,” said Co-founder TR Gourley. “But how many times have you been able to say you slid down your city streets?“

Participants in Slide the City will ride inflatables down a 1,000-ft. water slide. This one-of-a-kind experience will help people “slide into summer,” while supporting a good cause. A portion of the proceeds of each event will benefit a local charity.

“We want to make a difference while we’re making memories,” Gourley said.

The first event of its kind, Slide the City has seen massive growth since it started in 2014. This original concept went viral when the video was released, and this year promises to be bigger, better, and wetter.

“This will be one of the highlights of your year,” said Gourley “Get ready for the slide of your life!”
Slide the City will make its 2015 debut with a World Record Breaking event: longest slide and the most number of sliders, in West Palm Beach, FL on February 14th.

Each rider can purchase a one ride pass, three ride pass, or all-day pass. With over 150 events in the US and Canada, and more than 20 international locations beginning with Japan and Australia as early as March, water slide enthusiasts are sure to find a Slide the City event nearby.

All are welcome to slide into fun. Visit www.slidethecity.com for more informationabout Slide the City dates and locations or checkout what fans have to share on Facebook at www.facebook.com/slidethecity.


Jan March 6, 2015 - 9:17 am

So you mean the water is just recirculated all day and never chemically treated, filtered or anything? Ick! You know how much beer is drank in this town? Thank goodness there is someone looking out for our health!

Tim Peck February 19, 2015 - 10:02 pm

Actually, it’s not a statute, it’s a regulation.

15A NCAC 18A .2500

Tiger February 19, 2015 - 8:53 pm

Slide the City is still on for Spartanburg, South Carolina on Saturday, 25 April 2015. Link: http://www.slidethecity.com/events/spartanburggreenville/

Barry Summers February 19, 2015 - 3:11 pm

Is anyone surprised that this ran aground because of inadequate “suction hazard reduction”?

But enough of that – whose bright idea was it to put “pools, tattoos and state institutions” in one branch of the Department of Health and Human Services?

sunfleck February 19, 2015 - 3:03 pm

According to the Slide the City website they were planning to bring the slide to several cities in NC, including Raleigh, Durham, Charlotte, and Wilmington. Seems like a great big “oops” to not have checked first. For those who really want to slide, they have dates planned in Johnson City, Knoxville, and Spartanburg. Maybe TN and SC are more amenable.

Vent Easel February 19, 2015 - 1:50 pm

there goes Asheville, hiding behind state regulations again. I’ll bet somebody brought up public nakedness, and that led to thoughts about the intersection of nakedness and water sports, and the entire city bureaucracy pretty much broke out in hives.

Melissa February 19, 2015 - 11:15 am


Barry Summers February 19, 2015 - 10:38 am

Once again, Raleigh’s boot is on Asheville’s neck. Could this be the spark that ignites the “Give Us Home Rule” bonfire?

No, you’re right – probably not…

Harry February 19, 2015 - 7:22 pm

I remember a ground breaking ceremony for the homeless bathhouse, I mean visitor center in Pack Square Park, where a certain City official would not let the group take a shovel full of dirt because they didn’t have a focking permit.

Get over it hack. Doesn’t matter if it’s local, state, or federal, too much gubment is never good. And that’s exactly what we have on all levels.

Barry Summers February 19, 2015 - 8:17 pm

You lost me at anonymous namecalling.

jtroop February 19, 2015 - 10:36 am


Come on Man! February 19, 2015 - 9:54 am

Come on Man!

murphy February 19, 2015 - 9:36 am

Did the organizer(s) of this “event” not think to check statutes prior to the start advertising…

Tim Peck February 19, 2015 - 10:01 pm

Actually, it’s not a statute, it’s a regulation.

15A NCAC 18A .2500

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