Toowoomba 150th Royal Show was a great success
all be it muddy!
Toowoomba, Darling Downs/ Lockyer Group members feel the Dexter Feature Show at Toowoomba Royal 2014 could only be described as a wonderful success.
Congratulations to all exhibitors, as it was a very difficult time trying to prepare animals for a Royal Show, many exhibitors were experiencing, not only no feed but being unable to purchase feed, hay and grain was near non-existent during the months of Jan, Feb and March. How many of us can relate to going into the grain company or local rural suppliers with orders worth hundreds of dollars only to return home with 6 or 7 bags of feed, a heavy heart and a mind running in overtime as to where else to try for feed. Not just for show stock but the whole herd.
Then there was the water, or lack of it. Wind mills around the Downs that have never not kept up with the water supply were suddenly not pumping enough water due to the lack of wind or the direction of wind. Again how many of us nearly went in sane, checking the tank levels, twice daily, before ringing a water contractor, or traveling for Kilometres daily to cart water. Water Contractors on the Downs were working 16 to 18 hour day’s just carting stock water, and we were all in hock for either water or feed or both.
Phone calls started to be received with scratching due to folks being unable to leave their properties, due to the daily feeding and watering commitment’s, others told themselves they couldn’t justify the expense of going, but went any way. Some of our entered 54 head of Dexter’s started to roll into the Show grounds on Tuesday, as did the storm clouds.
Wednesday morning saw more Dexter’s and bigger storm clouds arrive. Then the heavens opened, and there are no other words to explain it, than sheer hell broke out, at Toowoomba Showgrounds, rain, rain and more rain. Still Dexter’s kept coming, along with the rain, Toowoomba’s beautiful fertile black soil true to its name stuck to everything, hooves, boots, bums when we slipped over and vehicle tyres, vehicles got stuck, the loading ramp was unusable, water ran in the marquee, we awoke Thursday morning to find our Dexter’s standing in knee deep water, our $17 plus bales of hay wet, precious bags of grain sitting in water, those of us in tents, had our air beds floating in the stream running through the camp grounds and water running off the tarps straight into the fridge vents, gas stoves that wouldn’t light. Nooooo Coffee.
The irony of shovelling out wet shavings from the stalls when you know you only have wet shaving to put back in was not lost on any of us but we had to try and we did find dry shavings down underneath. Way down underneath I might add. It became a relay of shovelling and pushing barrows, never mind whose barrow or shovel, everyone just got stuck in and helped thy neighbour.
Our poor stock thought us completely nuts lining them up on the wash bays and hosing them in between the showers on Friday, Thank goodness show day wasn’t until the next day, sometimes being treated as a small breed has its advantages.
Saturday saw Toowoomba turn on one of the most gorgeous autumn days we had experienced in a long, long time. Forty five scrubbed and spruced up Dexter’s appeared on Saturday, all whom seemed to appreciate the break in the weather. Every one of them looked absolutely stunning out on the show ring with the dewy grass and sunny skies. An exemption was given to departure time of stock, due to the appalling weather conditions. After judging saw a mass evacuation of animals. Sunday morning
Toowoomba once again showed us what its weather is capable of, the main inches of water fell within half an hour. The showgrounds were awash with water, main arena one big lake with just marquees roofs out of the water. Norm Eriksen from Rocky was to leave for home early Sunday morning, we tried to ring and hoped no reply meant he had beaten the down pour and was on the road.
T’ba D.D/Lockyer Group would like to thank all the exhibitors for making a feature show that had the potential to be a disaster a very enjoyable, time.
A special thank you to Troy Nuttridge for securing every stud some sponsorship. Also I feel our treasurer and her husband Cheryl and John Neroni need a special thank you.
First time ever at a cattle show, let alone a wet royal, but without them we would have been lost.
Cheryl was there from Tuesday helping where ever she could, then the two of them worked in the tent, recording, sashing and being general gofers for everyone and anyone. A hearty big thank you from all exhibitors, you helped to keep it rolling so we could get home and dried out.
Toowoomba Darling Downs Lockyer Dexter Cattle Promotion Group