ATTENDANCES were down slightly at this year’s Warrnambool show but organisers were pleased with the response to several new attractions.
Show secretary Mike Farrow said windy and wet weather on Friday and Saturday might have deterred some patrons, with aggregate attendance figures likely to be about 7500, down on 2012.
But Mr Farrow said the Great South Coast Food Hall in the commerce pavilion, which featured regional food producers and cooking demonstrations, was popular.
“We will try and expand on that next year,” he said.
Participants in the show’s equestrian events also praised improvements done over the past six months to the horse arena’s surface.
The show this year featured an interschool horse competition and unofficial EA dressage competition on Thursday, before proceeding to numerous showjumping, pony club and other equestrian competitions.
The show built on its reputation as a high-standard equestrian event, with horsemanship shows and clinics by horse skills teacher Steve Cox well patronised.
Mr Farrow said the show had received lots of good feedback about Jamie and Kim’s Mobile Zoo and the animal nursery, to which local people contributed animals.
The young farmers team challenge, in which four teams rushed to complete tasks such as rolling a swag and erecting electric fencing, provided light-hearted entertainment for the participants and spectators alike on Saturday.
Finals of the Australian National Shearing and Romney Shearing competitions on Saturday night put the spotlight on the blue singlet brigade at the peak of their talents, while a fireworks show as darkness fell capped off a lively night.
Mr Farrow said attendances on Friday were aided by Warrnambool Catholic schools giving students the day off and other schools attending as excursions.
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.