Tun­za­fun gear­ing up for Christ­mas

Yarrawonga Chronicle - - Front Page - BY ROBERT MUIR

Mul­wala’s Tun­za­fun Amuse­ment Park will be the fore­run­ner of amuse­ment parks in the south­ern re­gion of NSW and north­ern Vic­to­ria.

That’s the view of re­cently ap­pointed man­ager of the pop­u­lar amuse­ment park, Phil Bott.

The 64-year-old from Mel­bourne loves his “tree change” from Mel­bourne and all the devel­op­ments at the Mel­bourne Street Tun­za­fun.

Nu­mer­ous brand new rides - all en­closed un­der new fa­cil­i­ties – have cap­tured the at­ten­tion of lo­cals and vis­i­tors.

Twelve brand new BMW dodgem cars, four Teacup Char­ac­ter Rides, four Krazy Cars and a Gy­ro­scope Ride un­der cover of one big new build­ing will suit all ages of peo­ple.

The four Krazy Cars are a mini ver­sion of the larger Krazy Cars which will re­main in their lo­ca­tion but in a more user-friendly and en­larged area. The ex­ist­ing dodgem cars will re­main in their area. These two ar­eas are sep­a­rated by the ex­ist­ing lawned bar­be­cue area.

A brand new Carousel with 18 seats will re­place the chero­plane, also un­der cover of a shed which is near­ing com­ple­tion.

“Tun­za­fun is an ex­cit­ing project at the mo­ment,” Phil told the Yar­ra­wonga Chron­i­cle. “I’m a big one on safety as­pects. Any­one who en­ters and leaves Tun­za­fun must do safely. Have a good time with­out the worry of an in­jury - that’s Tun­za­fun. I am very safety con­scious.”

Phil’s back­ground in­cludes be­ing a main­te­nance man­ager in Mel­bourne for two years with Ac­cor Group of Ho­tels and five years with Oaks Group of Ho­tels and Re­sorts. He pos­sesses first aid and O.H.& S. cer­tifi­cates.

He won’t use the word but he was a star darts player. Phil also played about 250 games of foot­ball with East Kew and North Bal­wyn in the South East Sub­ur­ban League, as a de­fender.

The new man­ager was wel­comed to Tun­za­fun by park co-or­di­na­tor Robert (Pos­sum) Pur­tle OAM.

“We wel­come Phil. His name is the same as Gra­ham Bott (pre­vi­ous man­ager) but no re­la­tion!” Pos­sum said.

“We sadly miss Gra­ham’s ex­per­tise and thank him very much for set­ting up and run­ning Tun­za­fun over ap­prox­i­mately 11 years.

“The sup­port we’re get­ting from our vol­un­teers with these huge devel­op­ments has just been sen­sa­tional. I ex­press a huge thank you to the likes of Daryl Davey (reign­ing Cit­i­zen of Year), Ge­orge Jenkins, Tony Cu­sack, Neal Spratling, Noel Owen and Ron Hall. With­out them, we couldn’t have a big­ger and bet­ter Tun­za­fun.”

Phil also ex­pressed his ap­pre­ci­a­tion to the vol­un­teers, and to the sup­port of the pub­lic and vis­i­tors.

Key vol­un­teer Ge­orge Jenkins loves the new rides from China for Tun­za­fun. In June this year, Ge­orge and re­tired chief, Gra­ham Bott, went to China for a week fact-find­ing mis­sion and re­turned sat­is­fied.

“We went to Zhengzhou which has a pop­u­la­tion of 11 mil­lion peo­ple,” Ge­orge said. “The com­pany (Jin­shan) looked af­ter us and we chose rises which are pop­u­lar at other fun­fairs and shows.

“All up, it’s cost some $150,000 to get them all here and over the 11 years since we’ve taken over Tun­za­fun we’ve prob­a­bly spent $750,000.”

Ge­orge said Tun­za­fun is unique to coun­try Vic­to­ria. “There’s noth­ing like it in north-east Vic­to­ria or out­side of Mel­bourne,” he said.

“We’ve got peo­ple com­ing from Al­bury, Wodonga, Nathalia and Shep­par­ton to see what we have.”

While lo­cals and vis­i­tors have been en­joy­ing the mini-golf, tram­po­lines and dodgem cars, vol­un­teers have been work­ing hard to hav­ing ev­ery­thing in place as soon as prac­ti­ca­ble. It is a big job.

“We ex­pect to have two-thirds of Tun­za­fun op­er­a­tional by Christ­mas,” Phil said. By then, there will be lots more of fun for all ages of peo­ple, bring­ing smiles to the faces of all ages of peo­ple, even if it’s just watch­ing your grand­kids en­joy­ing them­selves.

Robert Pur­tle OAM wel­comes new Tun­za­fun Man­ager Phil Bott. Also pic­tured are new Krazy Cars, new Gy­ro­scope and of course, mini-golf in the back­ground un­der shade sails.

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