Thursday, 24 November 2011

Spirit of the Land Festival 2011

As you know, I live at The Rock in the Shire of Lockhart in the Riverina of NSW.  Each October, the town of Lockhart swells to 5,000 to 6,000 people to view the magnificent art sculpture displayed for the Spirit of the Land Festival.
This year's winning entry was from Stuart Taylor (Deniliquin) who was a worthy winner of the National Farm Art Sculpture Competition called "Horse Power".
Second place went to Stuart Spragg with his entry of
"A Drover's Life".

The Spirit of the Land Festival Lockhart grew out of the worst drought in Australian history and concerns over escalating rural suicides.
It took shape to encourage farmers determined to survive living and working on the land to use country ingenuity and create sculptures using old farm machinery, recycled scrap metal and elements of the land.
The Farm Art attracted national and international media and major corporate sponsors enabling a $10,000 first prize. In three years it became a finalist in the NSW Inland Tourism award and is fast becoming the “Farm Art” capital of Australia. It continues to expand supporting the best of Country Australia experiences in a three day Festival held on the second weekend of October each year.
Our community is very proud of the ongoing achievement.
Others works of art include 
"Steel Wool" and "Sculptures by the Lagoon".

Still on "farm" news; one of our neighbours is the Gill Family.  John (Happy) Gill & Sons is Australia's largest and most complete professional Rodeo livestock contracting firm, producing over 40 Rodeos, Bull Rides and corporate promotions annually. 
They have been featured in a full length documentary on the ABC's "An Australian Story" TV program. Margaret Gill proudly explained to me why they had won on more than one occasion the "Best Stand Award" at the Royal Melbourne Agricultural Show for their Pony Rides etc. for the kids.  (Interesting criteria how those points are awarded and accumulated to give them that prized trophy.)  Their establishment entry is heralded by one of their Australian Champion Bucking Horses as shown here.
Recently, I noticed new headstones placed in a row in their front paddock along our jointly used laneway - definitely a cemetry.
Intrigued, I took these photos and Margaret explained that they were the grave yards of all their famous Australian Rodeo Bull Champions and YES, they ARE actually buried there.  How thoughtful and respectful to give these dignitaries a special resting place in the paddocks they grazed in between rodeos!

Here rests "Bambi", "Earthquake", "Insanity", "Akubra", "Cobra", "Paper Doll" & "Loadfinder". 

They are ALL Champions!
Other NEWS of the day is that I have joined TWITTER
So, if you like to "tweet", may I invite you to follow me
with regular quick comments of happenings?
PS.  Visit "What's New" on my website as I've added several NEW products!

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