Students shine at EKKA
The best of both worlds – our students balance school work and their Ekka commitments. Hear from two of our students about their experiences at this year’s Ekka.
By Layla Short – Year 11
I’m a sixth generation Showmen who grew up travelling all over Australia working at small and Capital shows including the Sydney and Melbourne Royal, the Ekka and Ipswich Show. A usual day at work is packing up rides and travelling to the next location which could be one hour or three days away. On arrival, our family team—my Dad, our permanent staff and interim workers, like backpackers—unload and set-up rides plus amusements like the dodgem cars and jumping castles.
Every Show Day is intense with super-excited visitors ensuring every moment, from 8am set-up to 11pm close, is hectic.
My favourite experiences are associated with specific places. I love Cairns because at this show the Showmen’s Guild has plenty of traditions: Fancy Dress, raffles, prizes, feasting, dancing and raising funds for our travelling school.
The NSTSC (National School for Travelling Show Children) allows families with younger children to stay together. Show kids attend primary school on wheels – a big moving classroom. In high school, many of us transition to Boarding School so that’s why I have ended up at IGGS. Currently I live with my Nan on the Gold Coast during non-school time as my family continues our life as Showmen.
The Ekka is here so I will be joining my family. I am reminded of how hard we work, how different the Showmen life is and how much this experience has shaped me. I am definitely ‘street’ and ‘show’ smart and world aware. My four-year-old sister, Ruby, could probably teach a few life lessons to the students here. She’s out all day, being a boss with the other kids. The Showmen will always look out for her, just as they have done for me; they’re my family.
When everyone rocks up to the EKKA over the next two weeks, maybe they will wonder about the people who put all of it together, the people who make sure the ‘fun’ happens. That’s me, my family, the SHOWMEN.
By Katie Stenzel – Year 12
Our family have been operating Farmers Choice Meats with cattle from our farm and pork and lamb sourced throughout Australia since 2007. We regularly enter various competitions to showcase our steer and cattle. This year we are proud to announce the following places:
Led Steer Hoof
- Tubs placing 3rd in Class 2 weighing 353kg
- Amber placing 3rd in Class 14 weighing 484 kg
- Brandy placing 2nd in Class 16 weighing 384 kg
- Juke placing 4th in Class 17 weighing 409kg
Led Steer Hook
- Shay receiving Champion out of all heifer classes with a score of 95
- Lizzie receiving Reserve Champion with a score of 92
- Tubs receiving 1st place in Class 2 with a score of 94
- Tag number 2 placing 2nd in Class 19
- Tag number 59 placing 2nd in Class 24
- Tag number 65 placing 1st in Class 26 and then receiving Champion Heifer
We would like to say a massive thank you to everyone for their continuous support throughout our endeavours. A special mention to the O’Dwyer brothers for all the guidance and help this year. We would also like to say a huge congratulations to all other exhibitors who attended this competition.
To find out more about Farmers Choice Meats, please visit their website.