Words of Shakespeare Easter Edition: A Triumphant Return of Agricultural Fun!
On the 1st of April 2021, my friends Jacinta, Sam and I went to the Sydney Royal Easter Show at the Sydney Showgrounds in Olympic Park, Homebush Bay. The Easter Show has returned a year after it was unable to be held due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which had called off many regional agricultural shows in Australia and all the Royal shows in the Capital cities with it in 2020. I was very devastated last year when I heard the saddening news that there would be no Dagwood Dogs, chips or cheese on sticks being eaten, no showbags being sold physically, no animals being on display, no bits of wood being hacked away by the axemen and axe women and the sounds of the screams and laughter of the Coca Cola carnival being silenced in an event of such crisis that brought my many plans of fun and excitement to a screeching halt.
However, since it is a new year and we have handled such a calamitous time, we can now hold these famous events in a safe and clean manner with COVID-safe protocols put in place. At the Easter Show, these included physical distancing, hand sanitizer stations, and a red, yellow and green crowd control system for the showgoers to know if the arenas and pavilions are a-okay to enter!
Within our four and a half hours at the Showgrounds we looked at the various farmyard animals such as goats, pigs, poultry, sheep, cows, cattle and horses via the Channel 10 Animal Walk, as well as looking at the coveted prizes those animals won via the goat and cattle shows. This included looking at the dog breeds that were on show in the Dog Pavilion such as the Saluki.
We then partook in riding one of the new rides at the Coca Cola Carnival, for example the new Wild Mouse Rollercoaster. As a fan of old style Rollercoasters this was the ride for me, as I don’t usually sit well with the other extreme rides such as the No Limit and the Extreme Speed 2 ride. (I still have massive PTSD after going on the latter two years ago as the entire Showgrounds heard me screaming!) The Wild mouse was such a thrill for Sam and I, as we were screaming and laughing as we went down the drops!
The entertainment was such a delight. We saw the wonders of the woodchopping at the Woodchop Stadium, where the Axe Men and Axe Women compete in what the Royal Easter Show call the “Wimbledon of Woodchop” where they compete in chopping down a small log underhand or sawing a tall log in record time. The lunchtime entertainment at the Giants Stadium contained the “X-treme Corruption” cart racing and the MotoX motorcross stunt team who dazzled the crowd with their jumps and tricks off the ramp!
The food was also a huge hit, with famous foods on a stick such as the chips on a stick, the foot-long Dagwood Dogs and my favourite cheese on a stick, a stick of melted mozzarella covered in deep fried batter! Some of the new food included Bacon on a Stick from Burger Head, the all new Pizza burger from Big Tony’s and, inside the Woolworths Fresh Food Pavilion and at Kids Street, the Dole Whip King. Dole Whip is a very delicious delicacy sold at Disneyland in Anaheim, California made out of pure puréed soft serve pineapple sold in four flavoursl Pineapple, Watermelon, Strawberry and Mango. It’s also very good for you, as it is much healthier than normal ice cream! The Woolworths Fresh Food Pavilion also had the famous fruit and vegetable diorama display of the District Exhibits, with this year’s theme being Hope through times of difficulty and uncertainty, after such a difficult period of bushfires and the Covid-19 pandemic. The Home and Lifestyle Pavilion nearby contained the Country Women’s Association tea room where their famous scones with jam and cream, coffees and teas and other light dishes such as Fish and Chips were being sold. There was also the $3 golden cheese toasties and flavoured milks from the Cheese Toastie Factory. The Home and Lifestyle Pavilion had various anime merchandise and apparel on sale as well as some nifty gadgets to use all around the home with experts giving out some solutions to change your home and life.
Before ending our day at the Easter show and departing the Showgrounds, it was Showbag time at the Showbag Hall! There were various showbags on display and on sale such as lolly, chocolate and snack food showbags. These included Wizz Fizz, Rip Snorter, Chupa Chups, Big Boss, Mars, Snickers, M&M’s, Skittles, Smiths, Doritos, Red Rock Deli, and last but simply not least, the famous Bertie Beetle showbags ranging from $3 to $18 dollars. There were also showbags containing imported lollies and chips and drinks from the UK, America and New Zealand.
Other showbags were based on TV shows, cartoons and movies such as Game of Thrones, Back to the Future, Fast and the Furious, The Avengers, Black Panther, Power Rangers Beast Morphers, Bluey, The Wiggles, Garfield, Rick and Morty and much more. There were also showbags based on NRL and AFL teams such as the Newcastle Knights (which I bought), NSW and Queensland origin teams, Sydney Swans and Greater Western Sydney Giants.
The showbags I bought were the aforementioned Newcastle Knights Showbag (I am a loyal fan through thick and thin!) and the Bertie Beetle Diamond Deal showbag, whilst Sam bought a Marvel super heroes comic book Showbag containing comics of various Marvel characters.
The Newcastle Knights Showbag contained a backpack, stickers, coasters, a pencil case, a notebook, a cooler bag, crew socks, a lanyard and a keychain, all in one reusable tote bag! The Diamond Deal Showbag contained 50 Bertie beetles. I have been a fan of the edible chocolate insect for the past twenty years and I still can’t get enough of them no matter which agricultural show I visit!
As we left the Showgrounds with a huge smile on my face, I was absolutely happy to see the Easter Show back after a difficult year of calamity and struggle with an all new layout to comply with social distancing guidelines. Some sections of the show were casualties to the aforementioned measures such as The Zone located next to the Woolworths Fresh Food Pavilion in the Dome Convention Center, which had various anime apparel and retro video games such as the original PlayStation and Nintendo 64 via Iconic Nerd, but it’s best to have these new measures in place rather than having no Easter Show at all. Free travel with tickets bought were also excluded to comply with contact tracing as well.
The Sydney Royal Easter Show is such a historical event that has been exciting Sydneysiders and the state of New South Wales for decades with new rides, showbags, attractions, animals and food and much, much more! Even though a sucker for agricultural shows like me was trying to get used to the safety measures for this year’s show, there’s such a strong chance that next year’s Easter Show will return to a pre-pandemic full scale event with tickets being sold at the gate, more food stalls, return of old rides such as the Space Roller and so on and so forth.
Sam, Jacinta and I had such a blast at the return of Sydney’s much loved event next to Vivid and I can’t wait to go there again next year!
I give this year’s Royal Easter Show a 7.5 out of ten!
I’m Kane Shakespeare and this has been another review on “Words of Shakespeare.”