Building on the success of Seymour Alternative Farming Expo McPherson Media Group and Lardner Park have announced the launch of a new field day in Gippsland to cater for a range of rural interests to curious city folk wanting to get closer to their country origins.
Lardner Park has joined forces with McPherson Media Group to launch Harvest Fest.
Running across three days — November 9 – 11 — the field days are focused on being a farming and lifestyle event.
The organisers expect to draw crowds in excess of 20,000 for an event to be built on the pillars of grow, make, eat and live.
MMG events manager Susie Filleti said Harvest Fest would be brought to life through hands-on experiences, exciting retail opportunities, entertainment and educational activities.
She said the festival is targeting small farmers, backyard and urban gardeners, home enterprises and foodies.
“It will provide an exciting and diverse program with live demonstrations, how-to sessions and tactile experiences with interactive content,” Susie said.
“Participants will be able to equip themselves and learn to operate a small farming enterprise, run their own backyard beehives, make their own cheese or set up their vertical garden,” she said.
“They will also be able to take part in many other experiences such as drone demonstrations, the latest sustainable practices and the best food and produce from the Gippsland region.”
“McPherson Media has a good track record in field days; we own and operate the Seymour Alternative Farming Expo, one of the most successful small farms events in Australia.”
Lardner Park chief executive Nicola Pero said her group was also looking towards the new event, which she described as a perfect match for Farm World.
She said Farm World was widely regarded as one of Victoria’s premier regional agricultural events, attracting more than 55,000 visitors and more than 800 exhibitors across four days.
“Our event offers a strong focus on the latest in technology, equipment and information and provides an ideal opportunity to get up close and chat with the experts,” Nicola said.
“Lardner Park stages 125 events a year, it is an incredibly flexible and diverse complex spread across 121ha,” she said.
“Everything from field day to corporate events to music concerts, from a proposed Comic-Con event to the world jousting championships.”
“Lardner Park also stages Australia’s only grass-based steer trial in a partnership with Coles and is home to CoDE, its Centre of Drone Excellence.”
Nicola said CoDE aimed to increase productivity through efficiency and the effectiveness of drone technology in various industry sectors and delivering solution outcomes.
Importantly, she said CoDE would enable regional communities to be informed, understand, be trained and licensed, and implement drone technology.
“The location for Harvest Fest is ideal, Lardner Park is close to Melbourne, the Lower Yarra Valley and Gippsland — making us an ideal hub to connect with rural, regional and metropolitan markets,” Nicola added.
“We have a catchment area of 2.2 million people and that has Harvest Fest off to a flying start already,” she said.
“It will talk directly to farmers, producers and processors, boutique to broadacre and right down to craft interests.”
“The idea of Harvest Fest has been bubbling along between Lardner Park and McPherson Media for more than a year and we are looking forward to November.”
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