It’s that time of year again – the Ekka winds are descending, a well deserved mid-week public holiday is in sight and the cravings for a sweet Strawberry Sundae are at an all-time high. It’s time for the Royal Queensland Show, or as we know it, the Ekka. But this time, with a twist.
The Sunshine State’s largest and most beloved annual event usually attracts an average of 400,000 people but – like most planes since March – that won’t be happening in 2020. Physically, that is. Never fear, your August plans can still involve show bags, strawberry sundaes and cute-as baby animals, as this year’s show will go on as an online event. It all kicks off with a fireworks display on Ekka eve that you can watch live on Channel 7 (or for real, if you live close enough to the Showgrounds).
“The Ekka is usually a chance for the country to come to Brisbane, an annual celebration of the producers who make our region so vibrant and not to mention, tasty. But since we're unable to throw a party this year, we’re planning on keeping the spirit of the Show alive by bringing a taste of the Ekka to you digitally, with 10 days of Ekka Online” a spokesperson said.
So, if the idea of being able to experience the Ekka without the crowds, sugar-frenzied children and bone-chilling August winds excites you, or you want to get in support our greater Queensland community, read on to find out everything you need to know about this year’s online Ekka.
This year, 10 unique channels will bring all the Ekka action straight to your screens.
Throughout the week you could be learning how to bake the perfect cheesy scone on the Blue Ribbon Baking Channel, Meet an Alpaca Farmer on the Meet a Farmer Channel, Learn about all the Dog Breads on Paws and Claws Channel and treat your ears to up-and-coming musical talent on the Unplugged Channel.
Click here for the full agenda and list of channels.
Most people love supporting Queensland's local independent businesses at the Ekka and thanks to the online marketplace, you still can! Let’s face it, who doesn’t love a spot of online shopping?
From food, to fashion, beauty and more, all of your favourite sellers from the Ekka will be available to order online, here.
Don’t stress, if the kids are missing their annual Bertie Beatle splurge, then that and hundreds of other showbags will be available to purchase too.
Every year, the Ekka attracts more than 21,000 competition entries, from Woodchopping to giant vegetables, beef cattle to dogs, plus award-winning food and much more.
So, if you’re one of those people who have been training since last year, or you’ve picked up a new skill in Iso, than you could still be in with a chance to take home the cake!
Winners are to be announced on People’s Day, Friday 14 August.
You’ve got to be in it to win it. Click here for the full list of competitions running.
Now, the tasty part of the proceedings.
Arguably the best part about this years arrangements is that Strawberry Sundaes, Dagwood Dogs and regional tasting plates will be available at several drive-through pop ups at the Showgrounds and other locations. Bonus, you can also get a 1 litre take home size Strawberry Sundae to share (or not).
As usual, all proceeds from purchasing an iconic Strawberry Sundae will go towards supporting the Prince Charles Hospital Foundation and The Common Good. As well as this, purchasing will help fund medical research into coronavirus and the development of treatments for vulnerable patients, amongst other important causes. It’s a win-win situation, really.
For all the details on Ekka drive-throughs in Brisbane, click here.
Sure, you can’t crash dodgems, run through a haunted house and have a day out at the show, but let’s look at the positive. Thanks to technology, we can still stock up on showbags and feast on Queensland’s favourite ice cream!
Ekka Online runs from Friday, August 7– Sunday, August 16 — and, in its virtual format, that means ten days of fun via digital means.
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