Perfect family weekend with a twist of Easter Show fun
Did you miss out on the Royal Easter Show? Not to worry, the best alternative is the St Ives Show held on May 20 & 21.
This event is presented by the Northern Suburbs Agricultural and Horticultural Society showcasing the best in arts, crafts, horses, horticulture, beekeeping, photography, baking with lots of family fun for everyone.
This year they will have the Horse Experience Show straight from The Royal Easter Show with Glen Denholm cracking the whip to open the 2017 St Ives Show.
This event oozes with family fun having attended many times in the past. Without breaking any piggy banks, entry costs $5 for children over 5 years/seniors/adults.
There are plenty of amusement rides for the kids ($20 for 5 rides based on token ticket system). The problem will be which amusement ride to try first of course. My kids will scrambling to get on the ferris wheel, jumping castles, boats on water, train ride, teacups, pony rides and these are just a few of the rides on offer.
Visitors can expect performances on the main stage ranging from singing, dance numbers and bands. It's the perfect way to appreciate the show and old folk like myself to sit down and relax for a moment or two.
Food options ranges from the Turkish gozleme to Korean bulgogi rolls, Cuban stewed chorizo paella (spicy goodness) and piroshky fried buns filled with a variety of fillings. Something for the kids and adults alike include dessert stands of handmade baklava, snow cones, fairy floss and sugar rush liquorice.
At previous shows, the kids were mesmerised by the live reptile show with Neville Burns who had brown snakes and tiger snakes slithering around. The small crowd around his stage hanging onto his every word, listening to his stories of being bitten by snakes and being educated on how to best treat a snake bite. Informative and mesmerising, ticking all the boxes for me and the kids.
Get a feel for the farm life watching the working kelpies herd the sheep. There are also puppet performances, police operations where the kids can sit in the police cars and rescue helicopters and let their imagination run wild.
The animal nursery is set up with so much to see whether it was mice darting in and out of a loaf of bread, guinea pigs sleeping, baby chickens chirping and darting in and out of the food, cats roaming up a chimney-like structure. Even an outdoor open enclosure with chickens, sheep, a turkey, pig, and calf which I couldn't tear my kids away from.
My all time favourite event would be the woodchop. I'm constantly amazed at the precision and speed at which it all happens. Look out for the Underhand event, where the axemen stand on the log and cut between their legs and the Standing Block which looks they are felling a tree.
Learn all about beekeeping and have a taste of the local honey. It was interesting to discover that dependent on the seasons and flowers in bloom and areas, the taste variance in the honey from subtle to bold flavours. I always manage to buy a stash to keep me going to next year's show (so if you are reading this, don't forget to leave a few jars for me).
There are also an assortment of stalls varying from women's clothing, gloves and hats, animal hats, toys, French lotions, fair trade wallets and purses, belts and other knick knacks. Perfect to peruse for that upcoming birthday or belated Mother's Day gift.
There will be plenty activities for the kids. Previous years included painting an umbrella $10 which allows for your child to paint their umbrella in a mirage of colours and you can pick up your decorated umbrella after its dried and you have finished your day at the show.
I recommend The Show for a relaxed fun day as it's not too crowded, the kids are amused and the parents are catered for and take in the fun filled atmosphere. There's ample picnic areas to chill out, just don't forget a picnic rug and enjoy the sunshine.