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15 December, 2020

Shows receive funding boost

AGRICULTURAL shows cancelled due to COVID-19 have received a slice of $34 million federal government funding to make sure they bounce back bigger and better next year.

By Rhys Thomas

SHOWTIME: Kylie Land and Leanne Thomas from the Atherton Tableland Agricultural Society are excited to have received funding to support their costs from their cancelled 2020 Atherton Show.

AGRICULTURAL shows cancelled due to COVID-19 have received a slice of $34 million federal government funding to make sure they bounce back bigger and better next year.

Six show associations across Far North Queensland were successful in receiving funding as part of the Supporting Agricultural Shows and Field Days Program. 

Locally, the Mareeba Rodeo, Malanda Show and Atherton Show have all shared in the massive grant pool announced last week. 

All three of these events are widely looked forward too by not only locals but people from across Queensland and their cancellation in 2020 was a big blow to the local economy. 

$70,000 was awarded to the Mareeba District Rodeo Association for the Mareeba Rodeo, $35,746 is going towards the Atherton Tableland Agricultural Society for the Atherton Show and $28,189 will be received by the Malanda Pastoral, Agricultural and Industrial Society for the Malanda Show. 

President of the Mareeba District Rodeo Association, Peter Brown said that the money will go towards costing and upgrades for the agricultural side of the rodeo.

“Just to put that side of the show on costs a significant amount of money it actually costs us more than we make back for that part of the event,” he said.

“A lot of the money will be used on putting the displays together and putting together some infrastructure. 

“We were one of the first organisations to get a full blown COVID plan so we could hold an event next week. 

“People can put it down on their calendars for bigger and better 2021 Mareeba Rodeo.” 

- Mareeba Rodeo Association President Peter Brown.

Treasurer and Event Manager from the Atherton Tableland Agricultural Society Kylie Lang was excited to get the funding and use it to refund their expenses for their cancelled 2020 show. 

“The money will be used to recoup expenses from the cancelled 2020 Atherton Show,” she said. 

“It was awesome to receive this funding as it gave us that boost for what we needed. 

“This funding has been a massive help for all the show societies in keeping them going.” 

The Malanda Pastoral, Agricultural and Industrial Society will also be using the funding they received to cover their costs for their cancelled 2020 show. 

Federal Agriculture Minister David Littleproud and Federal Leichhardt MP Warren Entsch announced the first payments under the program on December 3. 

“I am pleased to announce that 378 shows and field days including those across Far North Queensland have been approved for funding to help ease cash-flow pressures,” he said.

“The Morrison Government is keen to ensure show societies and field day organisers are in the best shape possible to continue in 2021. 

“These events bring our families and farmers together, build community spirit and help bridge the divide between country and city.” 

- Federal Agriculture Minister David Littleproud. 

Mr Entsch said shows and field days were uniquely Australian and provide huge economic spin-offs for local communities as well as opportunities for the businesses and services who exhibit. 

"They also help to keep maintain our farmers’ competitive edge by providing an outlet for new ideas, new technologies and new ways of working to be shared,” he said.

“I am very pleased six show associations across our region are able to access this funding to help get them through this tough period and out the other side in a sound position to host again in 2021.

“Next year is looking so much brighter and I know this support will be fantastic boost for our volunteers, families and school kids.”


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