Attendance was clearly well up for this year’s Tumut Show, with parked cars lining local streets for several blocks in each direction.
Margaret Black, the Tumut Show Society’s Secretary, said more than 1,600 people passed through the gates last Saturday.
“It’s the best year we’ve had since 2015,” said Mrs Black. “It was wonderful.”
The Tumut Show featured an abundance of returning events, including the Sideshow Alley, carnival rides, the Dog Show and the petting paddock. New this year was Circus McCabe, a Goobarragandra-based circus established by McAuley teacher Patrick McCabe and his family.
In the pavilion, entries were down in jams, art, knitting and crochet, needlework and some sections of poultry, but overall, judges spoke of “good variety” and “high standards.”
“[There was] a good selection of vegetables, considering the drought and hot season,” said show judge Pat Murray.
Photography judge Louise Whitley noted a “record number of entries” for the 11-15 years age group.
In the wool section, David and Jan McGruer claimed the Champion Fleece, with judge Chris Drum describing it as “a very well marked superfine fleece with good density.”
Floriculture got a special mention from judge Lesley Attwood, who described growers “fighting fire, floods and beautiful rain,” before announcing the Green Banksia Champion of Miscellaneous was “the best I have seen and all the way from fire-ravaged Batlow.”
Denise Ward looked over the winning entries with friend Fay Smith (who took home multiple first prizes), commenting, “For the amount of rain they had, I think there’s an incredible display.”
Jean Brown entered 11 times this year, in both art and craft categories, winning eight prizes.
“It’s worth it!” she smiled.
“I always like to enter something just to give people something to look at, I don’t expect to win any prizes!”
Ruby McAuliffe was named the Champion Rider in the under 13’s category, giving all the credit to her pony, Yatarla Park, aka “Kandy.” When asked why she thought she’d won, Ruby hugged the pony around the neck and said, “Because it’s Kandy!”
The competition was fierce but friendly in the dog arena, with English Setter ‘Hetty’ from Murrumbateman named Best in Show.
“She is just the epitome of an English Setter,” gushed judge Lynda Buckley from Canberra.
“The beautiful headpiece, the glorious coat, and she moves like an absolute dream.”
It was a pleasing year for the Show Society after a difficult summer and a week of flood warnings leading up to the event.
“You couldn’t get better weather if you tried,” said Show President Neil McGruer on the day.
“We had good rain and there’s no dust. It’s going good.”