THE Warrnambool show was the only place to be yesterday for teens and children lucky enough to score a long weekend.
With classic carnival parlour games and rides operating to a soundtrack of dubstep and dance music, the opening day atmosphere was electric at the Warrnambool Showgrounds.
Nullawarre teen Chelsea Walsh said many of her Emmanuel College friends were enjoying their rare day off together at the show.
“There’s heaps of people here from school,” the 13-year-old said.
“We’re just here for rides and having fun.
“We’ve been here since 10.30am and we’ll be here all day.
“The Zipper and Midnight Express were fun,” she said. “I wish we could come every day.
Dennington parent Sally Miller, who explored the showgrounds with her two daughters, said the occasion was a fun family day to look forward to.
“We’re loving the animal section and the horse events — that’s what we usually come for,” she said.
“We decided to come today because my daughter is volunteering with Emmanuel.
“Some of the rides are expensive but the dodgem cars are worth the money for the smile they put on your face.”
Ride operator Les Nikkelson said his family had been in the business for seven generations.
“We do music, speedway, a bit of everything — lots of stuff blokes like to try and are not game to,” Mr Nikkelson said.
“My ride some call ‘the circlotron’, some ‘the gravitron’, because it gives a sense of weightlessness.
“It was made in the 1950s for training space cadets who used to operate it themselves like a swing.”
While most children were not given the privilege of a day off school, there were still plenty of youngsters enjoying the sights and sounds of the show, according to Warrnambool Agriculture Society secretary Mike Farrow.
“The weather is against us again but it’s been a good start,” he said.
“We’ve had 200 kids through here this morning just with East Warrnambool and St Pius.
“The national shearing titles heats are well under way and will run from 8am to 10pm Saturday.”
Other highlights today will include the Circus Challenge, Jamie & Kim’s Mobile Zoo, showjumping, the Young Dairy Development Program Young Farmers Teams Challenge and fireworks tonight.