Omeo and District Agricultural and Pastoral Society will receive a grant worth more than $100,000 from the Federal Government.
Local MP Darren Chester has announced the agricultural society would receive the money to replace the shearing stands at the Omeo Recreation Reserve.
“This is a great boost for the hard-working committee members and volunteers who make the Omeo and District Show happen each year,” Mr Chester said.
“This $103,393 grant will also allow the committee to install a wool press and bins, and build a storage shed.
“The 135th Omeo Show is due to be held in November. One of the many drawcards has been the shearing, which includes the Great Alpine Shears Championships and the Quick Shears competition.
“The committee has prioritised replacing the shearing stands so they meet current occupational health and safety standards, as well as the expectations of shearers.”
Omeo and District Agricultural and Pastoral Society member Ronda Manhire said the new four-bay shearing stands would suit both left and right-hand shearers.
“This indoor space will be able to be used at other times of the year, such as for training shearers,” Ms Manhire said.
“The improvements will also enable the shed to be used as an indoor presentation area by school groups using the oval for sports events.”
The money for Omeo is part of more than $630,000 allocated to Gippsland through the Federal Government’s Regional Agricultural Show Development Grant Program. The other recipients are:
- Maffra and District Agricultural and Horticultural Society, which will receive $254,574 to build a dome-shaped shelter to create an all-weather exhibition space.
- Traralgon and District Agricultural Society, which will receive $157,525 to repair and refurbish a pavilion, including upgrading the kitchen, installing toilets and ramps, sealing the roof and Undertaking electrical works, and developing a webpage for the show.
- Yarram Agricultural Society, which will receive $115,190 to increase the capacity of the poultry pavilion to hold more indoor exhibits, and to provide more rides and attractions, including a monster truck circus show.
Mr Chester said the funding was a welcome boost for the volunteers who worked for the agricultural societies and others who supported the annual shows.
“It can be difficult the raise the money needed to undertake significant projects of this kind, particularly in our farming communities hit by drought, bushfires and now the coronavirus,” Mr Chester said.
“The shows are an important opportunity for communities to come together, to discuss the issues they are facing and to celebrate all that is great about where they live and the contribution they make.
“I am proud to support our local agricultural societies and help them to grow and strengthen their shows and continue traditions that stretch back well over a century.
“This funding is also an investment in our local facilities, which I hope will help support local jobs as the work is undertaken, and in our communities as they put these new facilities to use.”