Wairoa in top form at show

By Jonathan Dine

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TV personality Te Radar with the winning scarecrow. Photo / Sue Wilson
TV personality Te Radar with the winning scarecrow. Photo / Sue Wilson

For more than a century, Wairoa has been showcasing all facets of city and country life at the annual A&P Show - and this year was no different.

Show manager Sue Wilson said the three-day show was a resounding success with about 2000 people through the gate on Saturday.

"Everyone was in great spirits, it was a goody," she said.

Although it was a "bit hot" it was preferred to when the showgrounds were flooded in the 2010 show, and almost financially crippled the show society.

Old favourites - such as the equestrian show-jumping, dog trials and junior stock judging - all drew solid crowd numbers and participation, while a scarecrow competition offered regular visitors something new.

TV personality Te Radar was also among the highlights for locals.

"He was fantastic, people loved meeting him and he loved meeting the people."

As well as being a guest judge, the New Zealand comedian and entertainer mixed with the crowd and even took part in the rural Ironman.

The shearing also drew a good crowd.

Dion King's late call to travel from his new home in Wairarapa paid off when he won the open final.

The Hastings shearer, who recently bought a farm east of Masterton, had entered the New Zealand World Championships selection series and would have been in Southland had he not decided during the week that he couldn't spare the time away from the new venture.

And it was only a last-minute decision that took him on the three-and-a-half hour drive to Wairoa, where he hadn't won since 2011, and where he had been runner-up the past two years in a row.

The senior final was won by Bevan Pere, intermediate Paraki Puna and junior Morgan Hughes.

Ms Wilson said the show's success would not have been possible without the fantastic community support.

"It's not just the dollar value but also the manpower they provide."

Volunteers were vital to the running of the show.

Preparations for the annual event began in October, with some volunteers even giving up their holidays over the Christmas and New Year period.

"They're a fantastic group of people with amazing community spirit."

- Hawkes Bay Today

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