28 January, 2023
Dream falls victim to youth crime
JUST a few short years after opening its doors, Fantasy Tails has decided to close up shop for good as the owners continue to suffer from the effects of youth crime in Mareeba, despite relocating their shop out of the CBD.
Jared Yates and Zach Kroonenburg have always dreamed of opening their own pet shop and in 2021, they made that dream a reality.
The two locals were instantly welcomed by Mareeba residents and the wider community with Fantasy Tails being the first fully fledged pet shop to open in Mareeba for years.
However after a few run-ins with youth in Mareeba and being vocal on their stance surrounding youth crime, Fantasy Tails and its owners became targets.
To escape the constant vandalism and emotional turmoil, they decided to relocate to a safer area of Mareeba, the new industrial estate.
Zach and Jared could finally sleep peacefully knowing their new location was safe however they were no longer welcome in their own town as they continued to cop abuse from the same youth who forced them out of Byrnes Street.
Finally, it got too much and the decision was made to close Fantasy Tails for the foreseeable future as they both take time to focus on their own mental health.
“Unfortunately, we are still getting abused even when we go into town and so our mental health has really taken a downturn,” Zach said.
“The effects of youth crime have just followed us – you can’t escape it.”
Fantasy Tails is currently having a closing down sale with 25 to 90 per cent off items as the owners just want to “wash their hands” of the business.
Despite the unfortunate circumstances, Jared and Zach have expressed their utmost gratitude to the Mareeba community who has been nothing but supportive during their troubled times.
“We would like to give every single piece of thanks we can give, the support we have gotten even before all of these issues was incredible,” Zach said.
“We do feel really upset about this decision but I feel we really need to focus on ourselves at the moment and maybe in the future we will see how we go.”