Sydney’s Royal Easter Show is Australia’s largest annual event and this year, in its two-week season, is expected to attract around a million visitors.
RAS is a not-for-profit organisation that promotes and rewards agricultural excellence. Revenue generated through the Show allows the RAS to invest in agricultural programs, education and rural communities. Each year the RAS invests nearly $7 million in activities designed to promote agricultural excellence and keep our rural communities strong.
The premise behind the Show has always been to bring the country to the city, giving city dwellers the opportunity to embrace all that the country has to offer, and to witness and come up close and personal with some of the best produce and livestock in the world.
It’s the one time in the year when people in the city and the country join together to celebrate the great job our farmers do in providing for our nation. As one of the members of the RAS said to me today, ‘We are blessed in Australia; whenever we go to the shops the shelves are always stocked’. So we have much to be thankful for and attending the Show and viewing the country exhibits, is a great way to thank a farmer.
And while you can spend an entire day admiring the contents of all the pavilions celebrating agricultural excellence, the Show has plenty more to offer. There is entertainment, shopping, food and dining options, carnival rides and those take-home essentials, show bags. My Alfie has the app where you can view all 300+ show bags. He’s spent hours on the app and after thorough research, has narrowed his wish-list to 19. I’ve told him to keep culling.
Sydney’s Royal Easter Show opens tomorrow and has a two-week season with the last day being April 8. I was fortunate to be invited to a special preview of what this year’s Show has to offer. And the good news for Alfie is that I was allowed to bring a plus-one and when I thought of who to accompany me, he was my first choice.
Once we arrived at Sydney’s Olympic Park we boarded a train with other bloggers and media and headed inside the Showground. Finishing touches were taking place all around us in the readiness for tomorrow’s grand opening and from viewing some of the exhibits, I could tell some people had a very long night ahead.
We went into the Food Dome to see the District Exhibits. Without a doubt, the District Exhibits are one of the most popular exhibits in the Show. This year the display designs are a tribute to the ANZAC spirit and the commemoration of the 100th Anniversary of Gallipoli.
Men in white coats were judging the produce that was then being put into the displays. All ingredients in the displays have been grown by farmers. I was certainly impressed with the size of some of pumpkins and was told the largest one weighs around 640kgs (1411lbs).
All the people working on the displays are volunteers. During the course of the Show the produce in the displays is replaced. The food brought down from the exhibits isn’t wasted but is available for purchase and at the end of each day, many people take advantage of the opportunity to purchase produce direct from the farmers.
Another very popular exhibit is the Animal Farm. Over a thousand animals are in the exhibit and I was surprised to hear they all come from the same farm. And the owner of the farm has a dachshund called, ‘Bella’ and seeing she is a distant cousin of my Ruby and Rosie, I absolutely needed to take a photo of her. Isn’t she beautiful!
Alfie was in overload. There are feeding cups available at one end of the pavilion so children have the opportunity to feed the goats and the sheep. There are baby lambs and goats and after a demonstration he was given a bottle to feed one of the newborn.
There are puppies to hold, day-old ducklings and chicks, eggs with chicks waiting to hatch, alpacas, donkeys, pigs, deer, turkeys, geese, cows and bunnies. A lovely variety of animals. During the Show around 3000 people will visit the animal farm every hour.
Then we went to the Spotless Stadium which is where the baseball games were played during the 2000 Olympics. From the Field of Play we watched Xtreme Korruption performing dare-devil antics on motorbikes.
Alfie was in awe. Mr Boom is also performing and I understand he has an act where he shoots his wife, Lady Canonball out of a canon and dusting herself off, she then puts her husband in a box of explosives and blows him up. Somehow, they live to repeat this performance, night after night at the Show.
We were meant to see a bit of Mr Boom and Lady Canonball but she had a misadventure during yesterday’s rehearsal and broke her wrist. Doesn’t surprise me. The Show will go on though and she’s assured everyone she’ll be ‘alright on the night’.
After a light lunch we left the Show allowing all those working there to get on with applying the finishing touches to their exhibits ahead of tomorrow’s big opening.
And as for Alfie, he’s been bitten by the Show-bug and pestered me all the way home about when we’ll be going to the Show. I don’t know what day, but we will be there.
The exciting news is that Hotly Spiced has a family pass of four tickets valued at around $115.00 to give away to one lucky reader. As the Show opens tomorrow this will be a hard and fast competition with the winner being notified on Sunday. The tickets will be express-posted to the winner on Monday. All you have to do to enter the competition is tell me what you’re most looking forward to seeing at the Show.
Sydney Royal Easter Show: 26th March – 8th April 2015.