What an Xtrav­a­ganza

Southern Riverina news - - NEWS -

The fes­tive spirit was on full show on Satur­day night when hun­dreds turned out for the Fin­ley Xmas Xtrav­a­ganza.

From the start kids con­verged on Rail­way Park where at the rear sideshows like a jump­ing cas­tle and rides kept them en­ter­tained un­til dark.

Lo­cal per­form­ers from across the South­ern Riverina do­nated their time to sing to the masses in­clud­ing Ray McCart­ney, Nathan Ha­ley, Andy An­der­son, Sarah Orro, Kath­leen Har­ris and Mar­garet Gra­ham plus a choir of Fin­ley school chil­dren.

Santa was the pop­u­lar at­trac­tion when he ar­rived in a fire truck. At the time of his ar­rival chil­dren were singing with Nathan Ha­ley on stage, but quickly bolted to­wards Santa on the other side of the park.

There was also an un­ex­pected vis­i­tor from Gotham City, with Bat­man also hand­ing out lol­lies to the kids.

Fin­ley Cham­ber of Com­merce, In­dus­try and Agri­cul­ture pres­i­dent Gary Carr said it was one of the best Xtrav­a­ganza events in re­cent mem­ory.

‘‘What a fan­tas­tic way to wind down the year and cel­e­brate Christ­mas. We had a re­ally tal­ented line up of singers who all did a great job,’’ he said.

‘‘The sideshow was very pop­u­lar with the kids, and no doubt a re­lief for the par­ents who sat back on the grass en­joy­ing some lo­cal cui­sine and a much needed drink.

‘‘To see dozens of kids run­ning to­wards Santa and Bat­man was spe­cial and a real joy to see how happy they were.

‘‘It’s hard to count ex­act num­bers be­cause peo­ple come and go but at a glance, at its peak, the crowd was a lot big­ger than last year.

‘‘I want to thank all of those who helped set up, pack up and help be­hind the scenes, par­tic­u­larly the Fin­ley High School Ti­mor Leste Im­mer­sion Pro­gram mem­bers. With­out ev­ery­one’s help the night wouldn’t run so smoothly.’’

A much an­tic­i­pated part of the evening was the an­nounce­ment of the Christ­mas lights award win­ners.

Peter and Ma­son Mar­aldo and Paula Christie made it back-to-back wins in the over­all sec­tion, with Phillip and Jenny Thomp­son sec­ond and Kirsty and Troy Mar­shall third.

He­len Clarke and fam­ily was awarded best farm gate, Ray and Kay Sem­mens won the Chrissy Was­tle me­mo­rial tro­phy, the Cleeve fam­ily was voted peo­ple’s choice and Con Carr Betta Liv­ing was best busi­ness.

Judd, Matt and Ad­di­son Clarke.

Brett, Bodi, Lau­ren and Mikayla Cromp­ton.

Kath­leen Har­ris and Mar­garet Gra­ham.

Ja­cob and Jor­don Whit­taker.

Jack­son and Jim Cleve.

Ruby Beaver and Tiara Cowan.

Zoe, Gayle and Roger Reynold­son.

Peter and Jill Orro.

Jac­inta and Michael Tooke.

Jess and Mitch Pyle.

Bai­ley and James Kennedy.

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