Tag Archives: woodchopping

THIS WRITING LIFE: To Show We Go!

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Ooh, I so adore a country show. They remind me a lot of growing up, when spring meant the start of show season. From the end of August until the last shows of December I’d spend every weekend at a showground somewhere in south-east South Australia or western Victoria, competing on my horses and having a wonderful time.

Sideshow alley clowns, Luddenham Show 2016But I also loved all the other things that shows offered – everything from local trade displays to the hard fought baking and other competitions. The livestock pavilions, with all their smells and noise and sleek animals, were wonderful. Plus there were performances and displays and all sort of things to entertain young and old, and celebrate rural communities. I even liked the sideshows, although not that much. I was far too uncoordinated to win anything. Even the laughing clowns, which for some reason I loved (WHY? everyone knows they’re evil), used to defeat me.

Just up the road from me is the tiny village of Luddenham. Last weekend it hosted its 112th annual show and after saying for the last three years that I really must check it out, this year I did. And what a happy, happy time I had!

Lovely horses, woodchopping, bush poetry, whipcracking, sheepdog trials, poultry, an animal petting zoo, trade displays and more, but what really thrilled me was the number of young families there, enjoying this little taste of country life.

Here are some photos from the day.

Bush poetry at Luddenham show

The day started with a Poet’s Breakfast which was a lot of fun. Nothing like a recital of The Man From Snowy River to perk your morning up.

Sheep dog trials at Luddenham Show

Sheep dog trials are always fascinating. This combination did an impressive job with these difficult sheep.

Shearing demonstration at Luddenham show

The shearing demonstration, at the end of which the shearer did a very funny bit of sheep hypnotising.

Junior whipcrack

This young lad learned how to crack a whip from his grandfather. Love how Google photos can create gifs like this!

senior whipcrack at Luddenham Show

Meanwhile. this fellow learned his whipcracking off YouTube!

Veg display at Luddenam Show

In the pavilions we had lovely farm produce…

lowers at Luddenham Show

…and pretty flowers

Decorated gumboots at Luddenham Show

…decorated gumboots

art at Luddenham Show

…art

photos at Luddenham Show

…photography

craft at Luddenham Show

…craft

cooking at Luddenham Show

…and cooking. I bet these categories were hard fought.

Woodchopping at Luddenham Show

Outside we had woodchopping. I do love a man who can swing an axe!

Woodchopping at Luddenham Show

And more woodchopping. I so enjoy watching these events. The strength and skill involved is incredible.

Woodchopping at Luddenham Show

Here’s a junior axeman in the making.

Led horse at Luddenham Show

What I really came to see – pretty horses!

Pony events at Luddenham Show

Pony event judging

Cute pony at Luddenham Show

Too cute!

Australian Stock Horse classes at Luddenham Show

Warming up for a working Australian Stock Horse class

Pony at Luddenham Show

Little pony!

Poultry pavilion at Luddenham Show

As always, the poultry pavilion was a hoot. Chooks are funny.

Mice in the petting zoo at Luddenham Show

Meanwhile, in the petting zoo, we had mice…

Donkey in the petting zoo at Luddenham Show

…and a sweet little donkey

Guinea pigs in the petting zoo at Luddenham Show

…guinea pigs

The petting zoo at Luddenham Show

…and lots more overfed animals. Not to mention gaggles of overexcited children.

Reptile demonstration at Luddenham Show

There was also a hugely popular reptile talk and demonstration.

Vintage machinery at Luddenham Show

A vintage machinery display.

Nepean Hunters Club at Luddenham Show

The Nepean Hunters Club also had a trade stand. Not my thing but I couldn’t resist this pic. Their bow and arrow shooting range was enormously popular.

Dragon bouncy castle at Luddenham Show

Why weren’t there bouncy castles like this when I was growing up?

Hope you enjoyed the photos. I certainly enjoyed my day!

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2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show – Part 2: The People

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It’s time for part two of my Sydney Royal Easter Show picfest!

I hope you enjoyed Part 1 with all the animals. I spent so much time in the animal pavilions that I had to rush the arts and crafts, but I managed to get around most of it and had a wonderful time. There are some seriously talented people out there.

First up a bit  of woodchopping. Oh, I love this so much! They are amazing. And I was chuffed to bits to catch Tasmanian woodchopping legend David Foster in the Jack and Jill Championship Sawing Contest, which he and his partner won (very remiss of the show society only to include the men’s names in the results of this event, which is why I can’t tell you who is partner was).

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - Woodchopping

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - Woodchopping

The arena featured some daredevil action, with motocross riders and Mr Boom, a bloke who apparently likes to stow himself in box and blow it up. He walked away from that.

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - Arena Action

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - Arena Action

One of my favourite stands at the show were the District Exhibits, showcasing Australia’s regional produce. I’ve heard about these but never seen them, and what a year it was to have my first look! They were wonderful. The amount of effort and creativity has to be seen to be believed. This year the exhibits commemorated the 100th anniversary of the ANZAC Gallopoli landing and they brought tears to my eyes.

The standout had to be Central District, but they were all fabulous.

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - District Exhibits

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - District Exhibits

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - District Exhibits2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - District Exhibits2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - District Exhibits

These flowers were my favourites. So simple and yet so vibrant and perfect.

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - Flowers

The trophy cabinet inside the arts and crafts hall, containing all the trophies for all the competitions, was pretty spectacular. There’s some great history here.

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - Trophy Cabinet

A few interesting sculptures on display…

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - Arts & Crafts

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - Arts & Crafts

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - Arts & Crafts

The arts and crafts kept me mesmerised. The work and skill involved in some of these objects is incredible.

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - Arts & Crafts

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - Arts & Crafts

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - Arts & Crafts

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - Arts & Crafts

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show - Arts & Crafts

Oh, and I just so happen to catch these horsey chappies sauntering about.

2015 Sydney Royal Easter Show

I had planned to make my show photos only two parts, but I have so many cake pics from that amazing competition to show off I’m going to do them in a separate post.

Stay tuned!