Seven weeks out, a Queenstown music festival that’s sold about 5000 tickets still doesn’t have a confirmed venue.

Snow Machine — which comprises partying on both the slopes and downtown — last September used the Queenstown Primary School grounds for its evening gigs.

The amplified sound ruffled feathers across the fence at Kiwi Park, whose breeding season was in full swing.

This year, delayed development work at the school has caused the organisers to consider two back-up options for the three-night festival in early September.

Event director Quentin Nolan says one of these is also in central Queenstown.

His company, Mountain Watch, has applied for resource consent for the school grounds, which has yet to be approved, while he has applications pending for the other venues, he says.

‘‘At this point, between the three different options I’m not 100% sure which it will go to.

‘‘We’ll certainly know within the next two weeks.’’

Queenstown’s council offered the use of the Events Centre’s main oval or No 4 field, but the organisers turned that down.

‘‘We didn’t want the situation where we need to put 100 buses on Frankton Rd in peak traffic,’’ Nolan says.

Given last year’s experience, where two kiwi eggs had to be removed from male birds incubating them, and birds came under stress, Kiwi Park’s wildlife manager Al Browne’s hoping the school grounds won’t be used again.

‘‘It’s just terrible timing in terms of the breeding season.

‘‘It couldn’t be closer to us — the only way to have it closer is if it was inside the park.’’

Mayor Glyn Lewers, who met with Nolan last Thursday, says ‘‘from my perspective, talking to both sides, the organisers and within council, there’s probably been a bit of communication breakdown, from both parties, but we’ll work through that’’.

Asked to comment, councillor Matt Wong says: ‘‘With Kiwi Park being as close as it is, I just don’t think that’s the most appropriate venue for a music event of that size.

‘‘I think the event’s great, and I do feel for the event organisers, that’s for sure, ’cos, geez, you’ve got a lot of pressure on you, and you’ve got all those tickets sold already, so I do hope they find a venue.’’

Bar buy-up unrelated

Nolan confirms he’s bought Queenstown CBD hospo venue Surreal, however through an unrelated company.

The Rees St business has been run and owned by local couple Mel and Erich Stadler for almost 26 years.

‘‘It’s a great venue, especially with Rees St being opened now and the pedestrian traffic and what not,’’ Nolan says.

He’ll take possession late next month.

‘‘We’ll run it as it is and do some refurbs in the coming months.’’

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