Grafton Show gate-takings down by $10,000
WHILE the Grafton Show's competitive side was once again embraced by the community given the number of entries across all its sections this year, the figures on the gates told a different story.
Grafton Show President Rex Green said going on attendances from previous shows, Saturday's usually very healthy numbers paled in comparison this year resulting in $10,000 less takings through gate that day.
He believed the other two events held on Saturday - Grafton's Day Out at the Grafton District Services Club and the AYA Festival at the racecourse - impacted on the show's most popular day and time slot.
"We usually get above average crowds at the show because it ties in with the school holidays and normally Saturday night is our most popular timeslot. From about 5pm to 7.30pm, the crowds really start to move in. They finish sport and then head to the show. But that didn't happen this year I believe because there were too many competing events for people to attend.”
He said the show dates were something they could not change because they were controlled by the show circuit and when Easter falls. "Our show is always held three weeks after Good Friday.”
Mr Green said to avoid this kind of thing happening again he thought there needed to be some kind of consultation with Clarence Valley Council to claim the date.
"It's just disappointing because there's not a lot on in Grafton and then to have three big things on the same day -.. we need some kind of Save the Date for the show like we have for the Jacaranda Festival and July Racing Carnival.”
But it wasn't all doom and gloom this year, the President seeing some financial compensation6on with Friday's gate takings being up about $2000 from previous years, "perhaps due to the other events planned on Saturday.”
"We also had good representations across all pavilion sections and livestock competitions. We thought our horse and cattle numbers would drop because there was no show at Maclean but that didn't happen. In fact Grafton received the best number of entries in the whole north run of these competitions.”
Mr Green said the show would still show a profit despite the unexpected shortfall on the gate but they will have to be more careful next year.
"Having that money there means we are able to keep trading even if we have a wet year or if a problem arises but because of this year's drop in admissions we will have to be more stringent with the budget next year. We can't run at a loss.”