THE weather could not have been better for the thousands who flocked to the Foster Show last Saturday, with attendances even better than at the 2011 Show which was held in similarly pleasant weather.
Organisers were also very pleased with the numbers of entries in the various categories displayed in the Exhibit Shed, where the Home Produce sections displayed the largest numbers of entries in the last five years.
Competition was fierce in the Home Made Wine and Beer sections, where judges Graeme and Georgia Wilson of Windy Ridge Winery were ably assisted by guest judge Greg Champion and his wife Angela. The Windy Ridge Winery ‘Best Exhibit’ trophy went to the winning stout, made by John McKay.
Organisers are very grateful to Robin Taylor, Foster Seafoods and Windy Ridge Winery for donating the prizes. Their generosity helped to encourage the large number of excellent entries.
New to the Show this year was the VAS Carrot Cake Competition. Sponsored by Rocky Lamattina & Sons, there was a great response with 19 entries vying for the awards.
The judge of the Garden and Farm Produce section was very impressed with the entries, so much so, that even after growing vegetables for 72 years and judging them for a great many, there were vegetables on show that he had never seen before and all entries, he commented, were of a very high standard. He even made a substantial donation to the Show.
Rhonda Bland was awarded both the Mary McDonald Memorial Trophy and the John Davies Memorial Trophy. Heinz Haselroiter was acknowledged for his skills in working with timber by winning both the Stockyard Gallery Prize and the Best Craft Article.
A first for the show and proving to be very popular display was the WWII model aircraft exhibition and competition where models built by students from Foster, Toora, Welshpool and Fish Creek primary schools and the South Gippsland Secondary College were on display. Along with larger models at the Foster RSL stand, these made for a very interesting exhibit.
There were a very pleasing number of entries the children’s Art and Craft sections, which included some very imaginative masks, paintings and computer graphics. The Society is grateful to the local schools and their teachers for their encouragement.
Entries in the Photography sections were slightly down on last year, but once again the quality of entries was very high. Anyone interested in further information regarding the Foster Photography Club is welcome to visit www.fosterphotographyclub.wordpress.com
The Speed Knitting contest, hosted by Greg Champion, had the crowds joining in with the countdown to determine the winner, while the Sheaf Tossing, Gum Boot Throwing and Dog High Jump were enjoyed by many.
Great interest was shown in the sheep shearing demonstrations by Peter Gay. Members of the Foster Wool Group were on hand to show the various stages involved in yarn production and finished the day by completing three items of headwear in sheep and alpaca wool, which were raffled that evening at the Young Farmers Back To Ball – with all proceeds of the night going to the Prom Country Aged Care building fund.
Special guest Greg Champion, best known as a member of the Coodabeens, had recently returned from the Tamworth Country Music Festival and was in fine voice, performing to the crowd in front of the grandstand after officially opening the Show. Greg was very impressed with the Foster Show and later that night on ABC radio waxed lyrical on the subject. Greg also announced the winning entry in the Champion Song Contest (for the best parody), awarding the honour to Prue Fleming.
Foster and District Agricultural Society vice president John Sagasser was the recipient of a Life Membership to the Society – proudly accepting the award from president Noel Afflitto.
A great deal of talent kept everyone entertained during all sections of the Show Idol, and the Master Tot and Miss Showgirl entrants were all of very high quality.
In front of the grandstand where hundreds of people had congregated, was the waxing and shaving of three members of the South Gippsland Hospital’s Murray to Moyne team. Doctors Phil Worboys and Mike Fitzgerald came up smooth and silky following the ‘sugaring’ of their legs – a similar process to waxing, and Mick Manessa lost his much-loved moustache – all in the name of fundraising. These techniques were carried out by Nerelle, Vanessa and Laura of Essential Body Basics in Foster.
As always, there was a wonderful array of alpacas, sheep, beef and dairy cattle, and poultry, and some wonderful equestrian talent displayed during the show jumping. After an absence of three years, donkeys made a return to the Show, creating a great deal of interest, and the South Gippsland Working Dog Association’s trials proved to be a hit.
The perennially popular animal nursery once again had the children enthralled with a great variety of tiny creatures, and Mike from Black Snake Productions was kept busy all day, introducing a great variety of both venomous and non-venomous reptiles to onlookers.
S. White of Fish Creek was very lucky indeed, winning the $200 gate prize, generously donated by the Foster Community Bank Branch of Bendigo Bank.
“The Society is very appreciative of the wonderful sponsorship, assistance and generosity of so many individuals and businesses,” said show president Noel Afflitto.
“A fine example of this wonderful generosity is that of Westons Animal Nutrition, which donated a tonne of stockfeed which equates to around a full pallet and they even supplied the transport of it from Sydney,” he said.
“The help the Show Society has received from the community has been terrific, with working bees co-ordinated by Max Parnell and Neil Nicholls – and a team of gate keepers co-ordinated by Joe Bucello.
“This one-day show really brings the community together – both in the organising of the show and on the day and the Society intends to continue and build upon the rural focus of our show,” he added.
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