A few weeks ago Joe and I went to the Brisbane Exposition, known as the Ekka, because Australians love their nicknames. I was super stoked about it, because I LOVE fairs! It all stems from the Royal Winter Fair in Toronto, where I would dream of becoming a farmer. No butter sculpting at the Ekka though😦
It did have lots of animals! And food! And, since we went on a workday, thankfully not too many people. It was a great day, best shown in photos:
Nice Army Guy let Joe get into his truck. Didn’t bother trying to recruit that Canadian though.
The alpaca man let me pet his alpaca, but it didn’t like it. The guy told me his alpaca had never been in a pen. Why not start at a huge festival with thousands of people, right?!
They had a weird section where groups put together dioramas made out of the local produce from their area. This was one of the better ones. And this one, from a local high school group, was one of the worst:
Not sure why they were trying to show a cow’s innards. I think it won “Honourable Mention”.
They had a very nice flower section!
Next we moved on to the dogs:
Adorable Brussels Griffon!
I’ve never seen a long-haired weirmaraner before.
Next we moved on to the big guns: FARM ANIMALS. My favourite! They’re all such cuties! This guy greeted us in the petting zoo:
He was just scratching his side on the fence, nbd.
We bought containers of food to feed the little guys.
They were a wee bit aggressive!
Ayesha feeding a little calf. Not sure if they’re supposed to eat this stuff, but they wanted it!
If you put that cup anywhere close to goat-head level, they would go after it!
Cutie! I love baby goats! When I volunteered at the Australia Zoo, my favourite animal was a naughty baby goat called Hamish.
When I was little, I read all of the James Herriot books, and really wanted to be a country vet. To my delight and wonder, the Ekka had a birthing suite for sheep! It was a glassed in room where you could watch sheep give birth, and I just happened upon it right when one of the ewes birthed! It was amazing- everyone watching, kids included, clapped!
I’ll spare you the afterbirth photo, but we hung around for a while until she birthed that too. Then it was on to lunch!
Here’s Karen enjoying her post-lunch dessert. The classic Ekka treat is a strawberry ice cream. Which sounds yuck at first, but it was amazing! All of the ingredients were fresh from Queensland, and it was vanilla ice cream topped with strawberries topped with real strawberry ice cream topped with whipped cream topped with a strawberry. Soooo good! After lunch, it was back to more farm animals.
This was a brahman cow, which are known for being buggers. Not this one I guess!
This guy wasn’t even a year old yet and weighed 934 kgs!
After that we explored the crafting area, and saw a lot of horrible paintings, scary dolls, bad knitwear and beautiful cakes. It was a weird melding of horrible and wonderful, which I guess sums up the crafting world! Then we went to the “showbags” area, which is what Ekka is kind of known for. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but what I got was a warehouse full of plastic crap and candy you could buy for slightly cheaper than in a dollar store. A showbag is a plastic bag filled with the combinations of crap you desire. We bought a $3 chocolate showbag, and regretted it. Inside, I saw a baby (less than a year old) in a stroller holding a plastic machine gun. He pointed it right at me and pretended to shoot. I try not to judge parents, but COME ON!
The last exhibit we saw was the woodchopping. It was really cool! The guys had to chop slats in their log, insert a “step” into the slat, jump onto the step holding his axe, and chop a new slat a bit higher. Their goal was to take a chunk off the top of the log. I realize that probably made no sense, but just look at that picture and try and imagine chopping wood while standing on a rickety, bendy step! The guy who won was so, so fast. We saw some carnie girls who looked like trouble waiting for him after the show!
Something I don’t have pictures of is the hilariously bad show that we watched at the end of the night. They have fireworks every night at the Ekka, but to hold people off a bit they have a show in this ring. They declared it “the best show on earth!” I peed my pants laughing at how lame it was! They had two guys riding horses around the ring to ACDC. They had a chariot race, where the winner was busting out of his charioteer’s outfit. They had a gag duo of lady clowns. They had precision drivers, who used Toyota Hylux cars to “dance”. They had the guys on horses again, this time joined, inexplicably, by a man in a horse suit. I can’t even begin to describe, but if you ever go to the Ekka, for sure stay for the show, and get ready to bust a gut.
A wonderful day had by all!