Private show a real prize for kids with needs
THINK back to the first time you discovered the wonders of an agricultural show - the smell of Dagwood dogs, fairy floss and farm animals mixed with bright lights and the whirring of rides.
At 8am today, a group of children with special needs will experience all this for the first time.
Thanks to Grafton Show Society, up to 20 children and their families will have exclusive access to the showbag stalls, pavilion attractions and rides at Grafton Show for an hour before it opens to the public
Grafton mum Amanda Eggins said going to any public event was usually too much to contemplate for parents of children with disabilities.
Her five-year-old son, Lachlan, is autistic and easily overwhelmed by crowds, lights and noise.
Without the bustling crowds, this year's Grafton Show is sure to be one Lachlan won't forget.
"When I take him there I can just imagine what his face is going to be like," she said.
"For him to see all the new things without the extra noise will be great.
"We also have quite a few kids in disability prams. To not have the crowds to negotiate, it's just going to be a lot easier for them."
As well as exclusive entry, the Grafton Show Society offered them tickets at a reduced cost of $5, with children under five free.
"The cheaper cost is fantastic," Mrs Eggins said.
"Obviously, for kids with special needs there are a lot of costs with appointments and therapy treatments.
"It's fantastic as a social outlet and something to look forward to."
Mrs Eggins said she hoped more events would start catering to children with special needs.
To facilitate this, she has started a Facebook group called Special Needs Kids Clarence Valley.
Saraton Theatre is already on board, offering a private screening of Lego Movie on Thursday, May 29, at 4pm. The lights will be on to reduce anxiety and all tickets are $9.40.