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Thorpdale Potato Festival

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by Nadine Cresswell-Myatt (subscribe)
Freelance writer exploring Melbourne and beyond. If you enjoy the following article click on the Like button, Facebook it to your friends or subscribe. I'll update you with yummy and often free events. Like my photos? I instagram @redbagwilltravel
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You will need more eyes than a spud to see all of this


Welcome to some good old-fashioned family fun of games, challenges, feats and knowing more about the food that we eat.

The tiny village of Thorpdale, nestled up in the Strzelecki Ranges in Gippsland, has a population of just 471 people… but their potatoes are known Australia-wide.

In 1970, the hamlet established an annual event to celebrate the humble spud, highlighting the skills of the potato pickers of the time, as well as creating a community fundraiser for the small farming town.



After a 12-year hiatus, the festival returned in 2015 as a biennial event. The time was ripe as there is a growing food trend of understanding where our food comes from and celebrating food production with the sort of fun and frivolity that this event has long been known for.

The core values of the festival remain the same as way back then. That is good old-fashioned fun, with events for the whole family.

The Thorpdale Potato Festival offers up activities that you just can't find elsewhere - and most relate back to good old honest spuds.

There is the Vin Rowe Spud Challenge, which brings competitors back year after year to shoulder the 50-kilogram bag of spuds and run the course - although the rules have changed this year to make things even more interesting…



Then there is the Potato Stack - throwing sacks of spuds onto pallets - growing higher and higher making the feat increasingly challenging.

The Potato Picking for young and old is hotly competitive as well.

This year, renowned Hogget Kitchen Chef, Trevor Perkins, will be holding a cooking demonstration which will showcase the humble spud and some of the many things you can do with it.



The hugely popular Hessians on the Field will be held again. This is a fashion parade with quite a twist as outfits must be made from hessian spud bags. There are prizes across three age groups for the most creative outfits.

For us city dwellers it is a chance to get out into the stunning countryside surrounding Thorpdale. You will also be able to see it from above with helicopter rides from Promhelis running throughout the day for just $70pp.



Other crowd pleasers include a highly competitive contest of tug-of-war, sheep shearing demonstrations, vintage farm machinery, working dog trials, a professional wood chop, working dog trials, truck show & shine, a CFA display, TC Trikz stunt motorbikes, a photography competition, dance display as well as over 60 market stalls to enjoy.

Children's activities are included in the gate entry price, with a bucking bull, jumping castles, animal nursery, spud and spoon races, mash eating competitions and hessian sack races for the young and those adults who think they can still show them how it's done.

All funds raised from the Thorpdale Potato Festival are distributed throughout the local community, to groups such as the school, kindergarten, sporting groups, hall, Scouts and many more.

The Thorpdale Potato Festival is on at the Thorpdale Recreation Reserve on Sunday 10th of March, 2019 from 9:30am – 4:30pm
The cost is $15 Adults, $10 Children 4-16 years, $45 Family (2 adults/up to 4 children). Tickets can be purchased at the gate. No dogs please.
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Why? Good old fashioned family fun
When: Sunday 10th of March, 2019 Time: 9:30am – 4:30pm
Where: Thorpdale Recreation Reserve, Thorpdale, Victoria
Cost: $15 Adults, $10 Children 4-16 years, $45 Family(2 adults/up to 4 Children.
Your Comment
I think $15. Is rather expensive for a potato festival. No seniors discount.
by angpe (score: 1|12) 256 days ago
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by Deborah Jayne on 24/02/2015
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