LARDNER Park was bathed in glorious sunshine across all four days of Farm World 2019.
With record breaking numbers, almost 60,000 attendees enjoyed the extensive activities, exhibitor sites and family fun.
With the theme being ‘Love Our Farmers’, patrons got behind the farming community showing their support and encouragement of this vital industry.
Andrew Schreyer, Lardner Park Board Chairman, said: “With four almost perfect autumn days, a continued emphasis on new activations and a greater patron engagement strategy, I was thrilled to see so many people enjoying all Farm World 2019 had to offer.
“High spectator and competitor numbers showed the success of many of the recently added attractions such as the Super Horse Challenge and Farm World’s Fittest Farmer.
“Farmer Darryl with his 100-plus animals and the camel rides were also a big hit. The Farm World Market Place in the Exhibition Centre on the weekend was also extremely well supported by patrons.
“Many exhibitors I spoke to reported excellent levels of sales and enquiries over the four days. An all-time record patron attendance at this year’s Farm World was testament to the work put in by the Lardner Park team in ensuring there is always something new to see at Farm World each year.”
Held from April 11-14, and falling in the school holidays, meant that many families were able to enjoy the great outdoors with pony rides, camel rides, football skills at Evans Petroleum with AFL Gippsland, learning how to walk alpacas, getting up close with the cattle, story time and baby changing by Baw Baw Shire Family & Children’s services and engaging with Farmer Darryl and his myriad of animals.
The Victorian Police Command Vehicle was also a hit alongside the Beloka Kelpies Working Dog display and popular Lakes Entrance helicopter rides.
This year saw the introduction of an Australian Stock Horse Extravaganza which included demonstrations from Dan Steers of Double Dan Australia, a polocrosse display game, local pony clubs, learning sessions plus a junior and open Super Horse Challenge. The vibe was fantastic in the equestrian area with loads of keen patrons engaged with the talented displays and performances.
The signature Telstra Women in Ag lunch was incredible with some inciteful presentations by Melissa Connors from This Farmer Needs A Farmer, Claire Templeton from Square Mile Meats, Amy Paul from Ruby Hills Organics and Janet Barnes from Telstra.
With over 200 in attendance including a large contingent of farming families from Central and East Gippsland, a key take home message was “that nothing in life is certain, so harness every opportunity!”
Farm World’s Fittest Farmer competition was a keenly contested event with some very talented farmers vying for this year’s crown. The Lardner Movement team did a terrific job managing this event and a big congratulations goes to Oliver Vidor from Western Victoria for taking out the win in impressive form.
The weekend saw the launch of Farm World Market Place in the Exhibition Centre. With a ‘Make It – Bake It – Grow It’ theme, over 30 exhibitors showcased treats for the home and tummy.
Bushies Bakery was a highlight with their famous range of hot cross buns plus cooking/education sessions on the Gippsland TAFE main stage.
Next door in the Health & Wellness Zone, patrons were able to get health checks, a massage, loads of advice, and learn all about the benefits of essential oils.
And Farm World wouldn’t be Farm World without farm machinery and equipment, tanks, vehicles and tools and there were certainly a terrific variety of these on offer (we hope you got to check out the massive display by ACE Industrial).
Dealers were available to provide great advice, hands on demonstrations and countless promotional offers. With a growing use of tap-and-pay, visitors were not left wanting for cash with the Commonwealth Bank marquee and ATMs well attended on all four days.
And there was plenty of reading material available for those looking to take a few moments of restful sit-down with Farms & Farm Machinery Magazines, Farm World News and The Weekly Times.
In closing, Lardner Park CEO Nicola Pero noted: “In a year that has been challenging for many, everyone came out in force for Farm World 2019.
“The 2019 theme of Love Our Farmers resonated with everyone and hit the truth mark for the agribusiness industry and the thousands of people attending were happy to show that they #LoveOurFarmers.
“We’re so appreciative of all the support and positive outcomes of this year and look forward to the last weekend of March in 2020 to do it all again!”