Esper­ance Show a crowd-pleaser

Countryman - - COUNTRY LIFE - Dorothy Hen­der­son

Sheep, cat­tle, horses, al­pacas, poul­try and more than 70,000 peo­ple con­gre­gated for the 2017 Esper­ance and Dis­tricts Agri­cul­tural So­ci­ety Show.

While they may not have all been on site at one time, mild weather helped vis­i­tors to en­joy all the two­day event had to of­fer.

Show bags and candy floss made their an­nual ap­pear­ance, jostling for at­ten­tion along­side Fri­daynight fire­works, ex­treme mo­tor­cy­cle rid­ers car­ry­ing out ac­ro­bat­ics in the air and food stalls with mouth-wa­ter­ing en­tice­ments.

EDAS pres­i­dent Ewin Ste­wart said at­ten­dance was es­ti­mated at 70,000 over the two days of the show, with gate tak­ings up $10,000 on the 2016 event, which at­tracted about 60,000 peo­ple.

“We couldn’t have asked for bet­ter weather for the show,” he said.

“It is a good venue for peo­ple to catch up with old friends — there is a lot to see, var­i­ous in­door ex­hibits, trade and out­door ex­hibits and plenty of free en­ter­tain­ment.”

With showjump­ing, dres­sage, hack­ing, West­ern, work­ing Stock­horse and breed events on the pro­gram for those in­ter­ested in horses, there was plenty of ac­tion in the rings as well.

Cat­tle were pa­raded by han­dlers, and show vis­i­tors had the chance to view well-bred poul­try and han­dle fine wool pro­duced lo­cally.

The sheep pavil­ion, how­ever, was a tem­po­rary home to just a hand­ful of Meri­nos, re­flect­ing a change in farm­ing sea­sons in the deep south-east of the State.

Mr Ste­wart said an ear­lier har­vest had meant ex­hibitors were hard-pressed to find the time to pre­pare stud an­i­mals, in­clud­ing sheep, for the show.

“Har­vest is now much closer to the agri­cul­tural show, mak­ing it lo­gis­ti­cally dif­fi­cult for some to at­tend,” he said.

“We used to hope to fin­ish har­vest in time for us to spend a week camp­ing at the beach be­fore the chil­dren went back to school. These days, they start in Oc­to­ber and are fin­ished by Christ­mas.”

Ex­hibitors such as McIn­tosh and Son also con­tinue to view the Esper­ance Show in a pos­i­tive light, with the com­pany’s se­nior sales rep­re­sen­ta­tive say­ing the event en­abled ex­ist­ing and new cus­tomers to view the lat­est de­vel­op­ments in farm ma­chin­ery.

Pic­tures: Dorothy Hen­der­son

McIn­tosh and Son se­nior sales rep­re­sen­ta­tive Dan Tracey, Katan­ning parts man­ager Ashton Nehme and group sales man­ager Ben Daniell re­ported a steady flow of peo­ple vis­it­ing their dis­play.

Terry Mitchell with prize-win­ning su­perfine fleeces ex­hib­ited by his fam­ily, trad­ing as TM and MH Mitchell.

Shear­ing is al­ways fast, fu­ri­ous and pop­u­lar with spec­ta­tors at the Esper­ance Show.

Tak­ing time out from farm-re­lated ac­tiv­i­ties, Ruth Leske sur­veys her award-win­ning flo­ral ar­range­ments.

Lin­coln Watt, 20 months, and his fa­ther, Paul, ad­mire the fleeces on rams at the Esper­ance Show.

Derella Downs and Pyra­mid Poll Merino studs prin­ci­pal Scott Pick­er­ing shows off his wool.

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