The 133rd Great Northern Show is gaining a reputation for its competitive animal sections, with the Rochester event recording its largest number of cattle entrants since 1998.
While there were more than 200 horse entrants and record dog show numbers, it was the roughly 70 entries in each of the beef and dairy classes that stood out at the February 23 show.
‘‘It was the best beef numbers we’ve had in a long time, but dairy was back on some years,’’ show president Scott Somerville said.
‘‘Because beef numbers are gradually going up, people are starting to come for the competition.
‘‘One bloke I heard say Rochester was the best show for beef numbers outside of Royal Melbourne.’’
Mr Somerville said the high number of entries was a testament to the dedication of volunteers and the show’s long legacy.
‘‘We put in a lot of work into finding great judges and sponsors, and I think the people that have decided to enter this year are really aware of that,’’ he said.
‘‘The horse judges were referring to the competition as the ‘Rochester Royal’ again, and it’s great to hear that name back around town.
‘‘The horse competition, in particular, benefited from some really great sponsorship.’’
Mr Somerville said it was a great day to come together as a community in a particularly tough period.
‘‘It’s good for the town, especially when the season is so terrible for farmers,’’ he said.
‘‘It gives them a day out to relax and forget about everything that is going on.
‘‘There was a big crowd at the cattle this year and I think lots of farmers just wanted to enjoy themselves.’’
The committee is on the lookout for more volunteers to help run the show next year.
■If you’re interested in volunteering, phone Scott Somerville on 0408 846 221 or visit the Great Northern Show Facebook page.