The 129th North Coast National, the largest agricultural show in the northern rivers region, has finally embraced 21st century technology.
At the official launch of the Lismore-based show yesterday, sponsors heard that discounted tickets for $11 could be purchased online up to 15 August.
The North Coast National runs from 16 to 18 October, and will feature the usual rides, sideshow alley and a renewed focus on its agricultural roots.
This year’s theme is Celebrating Country Life.
Show president John Gibson said the Dairy Spectacular would be held during the main event this year for the first time, alongside the usual beef cattle judging.
Mr Gibson said holding the Dairy Spectacular during the show would remind patrons of the region’s dairy farming history.
‘We’ll have beef and dairy being judged at the same time on Friday and Saturday so it should create a lot of interest,’ he said.
Lismore’s mayor Jenny Dowell said the show was an important event for the region, and would give town folk a real taste of country life.
Cr Dowell said the show remained one of the largest in Australia,.
Show secretary Molly Patch said other attractions were being introduced that would appeal to families.
‘While the whole show is about families and kids, this year we wanted to add a little something extra so we have developed a fabulous new space for children – The Kids’ Zone,’ she said.
‘The Kids’ Zone is going to be an amazing space with lots of interactive activities and a place where parents can relax.
‘It will include Reptile World, a Lego competition, an Emu Van and heaps more. Kids will be able to enjoy feeding animals, planting seedlings, learning about water and the environment, fun craft activities and much, much more.
‘We want to give kids a full experience at the show – rides and fairy floss as well animals and the natural world we live in. Farmers are great stewards of the land and we need our children to learn those same principles.
‘We know the Kids’ Zone will be an excellent addition, especially for school groups.’