(From left) Dawson MP George Christensen, Bowen Show Society president Mick Boyce, Whitsunday Mayor Andrew Willcox, Bowen Show Society secretary/treasurer Bonnie Kohlhase and Bowen Show patron/life member Patricia Tracey at the announcement of $15,000 in funding for the society. Photo: Elyse Wurm
(From left) Dawson MP George Christensen, Bowen Show Society president Mick Boyce, Whitsunday Mayor Andrew Willcox, Bowen Show Society secretary/treasurer Bonnie Kohlhase and Bowen Show patron/life member Patricia Tracey at the announcement of $15,000 in funding for the society. Photo: Elyse Wurm

Show must go on: $50K boost for Bowen, Whitsunday shows

As the oldest show in North Queensland, the Bowen Show is a beloved staple on residents' calendars and a new cash boost will hopefully ensure it continues the long tradition for years to come.

As the home of two beloved shows, the Whitsundays has received a cash boost worth more than $50,000 to help support the shows in the region.

The Bowen Show Society has received a $15,000 grant from the Federal Government as part of a funding rollout across the county to support agricultural shows and field days after COVID-19.

Proserpine Show Society has also received a $41,667 grant as part of the same rollout.

Both the Bowen Show and Show Whitsunday were cancelled this year because of COVID-19, but there are hopes the shows will go ahead next year.

 

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Bowen Show Society president Mick Boyce said the show offered lots of entertainment options for families, such as a smash-up derby, fireworks and monster trucks.

"It's something for the kids to look forward to," he said.

With ageing infrastructure at the showgrounds, Mr Boyce said the funding would help cover ongoing maintenance costs associated with amenities like water and electricity.

Dawson MP George Christensen visited Proserpine and Bowen on Thursday to officially announce the funding, saying it would help make-up for money that would have usually come in through the shows had they not been cancelled.

"When you don't have the funds for an event one year, it's after to cover costs for the next year," he said.

"The show is the day the whole community comes together to show of the biggest and best in town."

Proserpine's Violet Richardson with the clowns at a previous Show Whitsunday in Proserpine.
Proserpine's Violet Richardson with the clowns at a previous Show Whitsunday in Proserpine.

Mr Christensen said the cancellation of Show Whitsunday in Proserpine was a big loss for the community.

"Prossie is an agricultural community and these shows bring that community together, so it's essential we keep them running," he said.

"They also help to maintain our farmers' competitive edge by providing an outlet for new ideas, new technologies and new ways of working to be shared.

"Next year is looking so much brighter and I know this support will be fantastic boost our ag community and all those who attend the shows."

Earlier this month, Show Whitsunday secretary Sue Quantock said a $40,000 grant was a fantastic gift in preparation for the two-day show, which would run on June 18-19.

"After such a horrible year it's a bit of good news," she said.

Dawson MP George Christensen with Show Whitsunday president Donna Rogers and treasurer Helen Wright at the announcement of new funding for the show. Photo: Contributed
Dawson MP George Christensen with Show Whitsunday president Donna Rogers and treasurer Helen Wright at the announcement of new funding for the show. Photo: Contributed

Having grown up visiting the show in Bowen, Mayor Andrew Willcox thanked George Christensen for the funds to support the event.

"It's a shot in the arm for the show society, they've got a big area to maintain and they do it exceptionally well," he said.


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