ORGANISERS expect attendance records could tumble at this year’s Australian National Field Days (ANFD) as people flocked through the gates for yesterday’s opening day.
While the first day of the field days is notoriously the quietest of the three, ANFD administration manager Jayne West was delighted with the numbers that came through the turnstiles yesterday.
“Looking around today the crowd is really good, the car parks filled up fast and I’d like to think we got nearly 5000 for the first day which is great because the first day is always slower than the next two,” she said.
“Another reason I’m so confident is because we’ve had a lot of indication from people who came today that they’re going to come back on Saturday, but this time they’re going to bring their family because there really is something for everyone to enjoy.”
Ms West said the multi-day pass, a relatively new concept at the field days, was a big reason for the opening day success.
“I was blown away by the number of people that had multi-day passes and indicated that they’re coming back,” she said.
“I guess that’s the beauty of having it on a Saturday it allows families who have to work the chance to come together on a weekend.”
One of the biggest supporters of the ANFD in Orange, Kattle Gear exhibitor Bill Vowles from Bendigo in Victoria, has returned for his 14th consecutive year.
He rates Orange’s field days among the best in the country and even better now they’ve moved to a Saturday.
“This area is a really strong cattle area and of course that helps our business but we’ve found that of all the field days we go to, Orange is right up there with the best in terms of follow-up business and interest,” he said.
“This year the organisers have tried something different by including a Saturday and we’re more than happy to throw our support behind it.
“In all honesty, what I’m hoping for is a lot of the people who work through the week on the farm or have other commitments have the opportunity to come because it’s on a weekend.
“The more exposure we can get obviously the better it’ll be for us and the other exhibitors.”