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Published April 6th 2020
COVID 19 pandemic forces cancellation of Ekka
One of Queensland's great traditions, the annual Royal National Association Show, commonly known as the EKKA has been postponed for 2020 due to the Coronavirus Pandemic.
Photo courtesy Wikipedia
Held among the backdrop of the winter westerly winds from 7-17 August, the show attracts an average 400 000 visitors each year and is considered to pose a significant community health risk as social distancing and other measures are implemented to help stop the spread of the virus.
About the Ekka
The Royal National Agricultural and Industrial Association of Queensland (RNA) was established in 1875. It's President was Governor Sir William Cairns and Bowen Park was chosen in January 1876 as the site for the first Show.
Built on a foundation of bringing the country to the city the EKKA has a strong focus on featuring the best livestock and produce in Queensland.
The Ekka showcases the best of Queensland, attracting more than 21,000 competition entries from woodchop to giant vegetables, 10,000 animals from beef cattle to cats and dogs, world-class live entertainment, award-winning food and wine, carnival rides and show-bags, family shopping, educational activities and much more.
For many though, it's the chance to see the fun of the flying pigs, see the latest glamourous designs of the fashion parades, and of course, the deliciousness of the strawberry ice-creams which make their EKKA experience memorable.
Instead, The Royal International Convention Centre (Royal ICC), on the same site (which is conveniently located opposite the Royal Brisbane Hospital) has been earmarked to transition into an emergency hospital if required.
When has the EKKA been cancelled before? The Ekka has been cancelled twice before in Queensland's history; once in 1919 due to the Spanish Flu epidemic and 1942 during World War II
In fact, the RNA was used during the Spanish flu outbreak when the exhibition dining hall was prepared for an emergency ward. The flu infected 500 million people – about a quarter of the world's population at the time.
So, put on hold your EKKA plans and stay safe and indoors this August.