Close to 40 Sydney Royal Easter Show staff heading to the bush for the 97th Illabo Show

Up to forty top committee members and suits from the Sydney Royal Agricultural Show are Illabo-bound to see how the country puts on a show. 

The Sydney staff, including the general manager of agriculture and the Sydney Royal Easter Show, Murray Wilton, are heading to the bush en masse for the first time this month. 

“This is big, many haven’t ever been out of Sydney to experience a real country show before,” Illabo Show committee secretary Leanne Belling said. 

Three Sydney show staff usually attend the Prime Lamb Hoof competition, but it’s the first time so many will attend from various positions including marketing, sales executives, agricultural development and section coordinators.  

Ms Belling said they’re looking forward to showcasing the innovative IT program for managing entries, point scores, prize cards and money.

The program uses a bar-code scanning system to simplify the hundreds of entries and prizewinners, and was developed by Ms Belling’s son, Nick, who works as a software developer in Sydney, specifically for Illabo. 

Ms Belling said the extra hands on deck should be a mutually beneficial experience for all. 

“They may be able to add to their repertoire of how they do things and we’ll learn from them,” she said. 

“Here, we’re farmers, we’re living and breathing it every day,” she said. 

Show president Don Pratt said the committee are looking forward to a big show after last year was rained out for the first time in the show’s long history. 

“Last year we had some school events in the pavilion but it was more of a community get together day,” Mr Pratt said. 

“We had no gate last year but the showground gets a fair bit of use anyhow throughout the year. 

“Hopefully that gate is way up there this year!” 

Highlights this year include the young auctioneers competition, the winners of which may be eligible to compete in Sydney.

The ‘Hook’ butchery competition has been cancelled for 2017 due to the unavailability of an abattoir, but the Prime Lamb Hoof competition will still take place during the day. 

Amusement will be provided by Wagga’s Tony Dolan, offering unlimited rides all day for a set price of $35.

The show takes place on Saturday, October 14 with entries closing 5pm on Friday, October 13. For further information Leanne Belling can be contacted on: 0428 245 468.