Increase in entries in honey, dairy goats, alpacas, and sheep

Hawkesbury Gazette
By: Justine Doherty
Photo: By Verity Cridland

“IT WAS a top show – every-thing was sensational,” show society president Ross Matheson summed up on Monday.

While Friday was a bit down on numbers, Saturday was on a par with last year’s bumper crowd, and Sunday was the best Sunday ever.

Hawkesbury District Agricultural Association administration and business manager Linda Beneke said “our carpark people said they had never parked cars where they had to on Sunday” due to the huge numbers.

She said for her the highlights of the show were the new $3m ride called The Beast, and the animal wrangler who did a breathtaking show with his super-tame horse. “Also the Aldo’s pizza van – it was really popular”.

Mr Matheson said quite a few exhibit categories had a resurgence this year. “We had the largest number of entries in the honey for many years, and the alpacas, poultry and dairy goats all had an increase in entries.

He agreed that those categories were ones which hobby farmers could do. “It’s a sign of the times that these are animals that can be kept on smaller acreages,” he said.

The sheep entries were very well supported by schools this year as well.

He said entertainment-wise the woodchop was a showstopper. “We had the biggest number of woodchoppers for around 15 years,” he said. “We had as many watch that on the Saturday night as any of the other events at the show.”

One of the teams of eight even came up from Tasmania to compete. He said the new heavy horse foal championships were also very popular.

“Our painted cow competition was also unbelievably successful – we had to split it into two categories – east of the river, won by Windsor Public School, and west of the river – won by Richmond North Public School.”

Another success story was the new Lego creation category. “We had about 60 entries.”

He said the fruit and veg sections were also “very well supported by locals”. “This was good considering the hot summer followed by the rain.”

He said it was a great show for the police as well, with very minimal bad behaviour and no major incidents.

Those with special needs enjoyed the show in huge numbers too. “Our disabled carpark was full on the Sunday,” Ms Beneke said. “We’d extended it and it still filled. It has about 250 spots.”

Mr Matheson said they’d also spent $27,000 making an externally accessed unisex toilet next to the craft pavilion, to cater for carers who are a different gender to those in the wheelchair.

In the only negative incident the Gazette heard about, a young adult was taken by ambulance on Sunday morning with chest pains.

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