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Agricultural activity highlights at NZ National Fieldays

News of sub-events programme for 2010 - 28/05/2010

Thousands of visitors go to the NZ National Fieldays at Mystery Creek on the outskirts of Hamilton, and many will particularly enjoy the variety of rural-related activities offered in addition to the strictly agri-business exhibits.

Aerial View of Fieldays Crowds of thousands at Fieldays
Aerial View of Fieldays Crowds of thousands at Fieldays
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I remember as a child being taken to the Canterbury Agricultural and Pastoral Show by my father. He was a farmer's son and would have gone into farming but for shortage of money. I recall growing rather tired of waiting while he lingered among the agricultural exhibits before he took me to other entertainments. I was glad that the strictly agricultural and pastoral features were not all that the Show had to offer.

Every year the New Zealand National Agricultural Fieldays sets out to improve and maintain the level of activities and entertainment at the agribusiness event. Although the Fieldays exhibition is focussed on the importance of business to business, the sub-events at Fieldays are still a significant contributor to the success of the super event.

The Innovations Centre
Kiwi ingenuity is celebrated in the Innovations Centre powered by the University of Waikato. Now located outside the Mystery Creek Pavilion for 2010, you can expect to find all the latest agricultural developments and technology. The Innovations Centre, hosts finalists entrants vying for the prestigious Golden Standard award with their genius backyard inventions. This year the inventive agricultural hub is intent on giving the entrants the opportunity to realise the market potential of their creation. The introduction of ‘The Next Step' seminar evening, allows inventors to seek advice from industry leaders, ask those who have ‘made it' in the industry and network with potential national and international investors.

Rural Good Keen Girl Competition
Due to the popularity of the ladies afternoon with the bachelors in 2009, the Rural Good Keen Girl Competition has emerged, making it one of the hottest additions at Fieldays. Eight rural single girls will compete on Friday the 18th of June for the title of the Rural Good Keen Girl and an array of superb prizes. The heats will test their rural proficiency and good keen girl character while contesting alongside the Rural Bachelors.

Rural Bachelor of the Year Competition
Unlike the Rural Good Keen Girl Competition, the Rural Bachelor of the Year Competition runs over the four days of Fieldays and is always a big drawcard at the event. The competition sees the lads contend for major prizes, the Golden Gumboot and being awarded as the most eligible Rural Bachelor of 2010. Throughout the week of Fieldays, the Bachelors will fiercely fight throughout the various heats that test all aspects of the single rural lifestyle. From digging to dancing, they will be put to the test physically and mentally; determining who is worthy of the Rural Bachelor of the Year title.

Ag Art Wear Competition
The Ag Art Wear competition invites designers to create a unique wearable art garment from agriculturally derived materials, the imagination and innovation of the pieces in the competition is inspiring. The highly anticipated design competition has a new spin on the competition for 2010. This year the creative aspect of garment design will be transcended into the showcase of the wearable art by having the standard catwalk transformed into a performance extravaganza. The stylish spin on the show is certain to add to the popularity of the competition, making it the most fashionable event at Fieldays.

Fencing Competition
The Fencing Competition also keeps up with the latest developments in the agricultural sector. The staple competition at Fieldays attracts many competitors from across the country to compete in the singles and doubles competitions for up to five hours of intensive labour. Every year the type of fence required in the doubles competition alters to maintain the skill of the fencers and to correspond with the trends in fencing. To complement the fencing competition the introduction of the new Fencing Demo Area is set to be an exciting addition to Fieldays. Experienced fencing professionals will demonstrate and educate the crowds on all types of fencing in this dedicated area.

Tractor Pull
Tractor Pull is another cornerstone competition at Fieldays and is a highlight of the year for many of the entrants. From standard farming tractors to highly modified machines, horsepower and speed are the only two measures that count. Both driver and tractor are put through their paces in the Tractor Pull Competition to establish which machine can pull the most weight in the quickest time. There is also a tractor pull competition for the kids, making the Tractor Pull area enjoyable for the entire family.

The Regional Excavator Competition
The Regional Excavator Competition is yet another display of expert rural professionals that can be discovered at the New Zealand National Agricultural Fieldays. The competition is intended to test and develop the skilfulness of the operators. Excavator operators are competing for the Waikato/Bay of Plenty title and will then go on to represent the area in the national finals.

STIHL Festival of Logging
The STIHL Festival of Logging celebrates chainsaws throughout the week of Fieldays. In the carving competition, contestants create sculptures out of wood by using nothing but a chainsaw; the pieces are then sold at a charity auction. Other sub-events of the festival include; the team competition, the ladies race, the hot saw race and daily demonstrations from the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS athlete, Jason Wynyard.

Cutting Horse
To see some exceptional horse handling skill, the Cutting Horse demonstrations are a must at Fieldays 2010. Originating from the Old West, the riders use the ‘cow herding instinct' of the horse to separate a cow from the rest of the herd. Cowboys and cowgirls demonstrate their horse handling skills in the AgriSea Stock Handling Area at Fieldays.

BIG Little Town Festival
The BIG Little Town Festival is a chance for the smaller towns of the Waikato to demonstrate their support of the New Zealand National Agricultural Fieldays to the thousands of visitors of the region. The towns can get in behind the agricultural event in numerous ways, showcasing the rural roots of the Waikato. The most popular aspect of the festival is the Window Dressing Competition, where retailers kit out their shop displays in any way they feel captures the Fieldays spirit.

Fieldays No. 8 Wire National Art Award
Another rural art inspired competition is the No. 8 Wire Art Award. The competition invites artists to create an original work of art by utilising the iconic farming material, no. 8 wire. The No. 8 Wire Art Awards are sponsored by the New Zealand National Agricultural Fieldays and is now a must on the arts calendar. The exhibition is installed at Arts Post from the 4 – 28 June 2010, entry is free and all pieces in the exhibition are for sale.

Best Site Awards
There are many activities that happen around Fieldays, adding to the overall character of the iconic event. Exhibitors also get their chance to be distinguished through the Best Site Awards. The awards recognise the time and effort the exhibitors put into their sites by awarding the top sites of Fieldays 2010. Sites are judged on creativity, relevance, appearance, staff relations and safety.

Australasia's definitive agribusiness event, New Zealand National Agricultural Fieldays continues to attract visitors interested in the variety of demonstrations and competitions, providing a balanced mix of business and pleasure. While the exhibition prides itself in being a rural business centre, the entertainment element continues to play an important role in connecting farmers to their industry.

New Zealand National Agricultural Fieldays will be held 16 to 19 June, 2010 at Mystery Creek Events Centre, ten minutes South of Hamilton. Fieldays is proudly supported by strategic partners; The National Bank and the University of Waikato.

2010 Premier Feature
2010 Premier Feature
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