Just when you thought you had seen it all, the Tyrone Farming Society has once again produced an amazing jam-packed and fun-filled programme of events to mark the 175th anniversary of Omagh Show.
Local farming’s showpiece occasion has through the years stood the test of time and, given the society has left no stone unturned in putting together another spectacular programme, the 2015 extravaganza promises to be the best ever.
In recent years in particular organisers have focused on marrying the traditional with the modern, fusing the old with the new and combining innovation with the antiquated in a celebration of the sounds, smells and tastes of the countryside.
This year is no exception with the society again going the extra mile in ensuring that their big day out offers something for all the family.
Year on year organisers have reviewed, assessed and strived to improve on previous events in a bid to cater for everyone’s needs and under the direction of new chairman Alan Kyle and secretary Edwin Cartwright the hard-working committee believe they have put together another stellar package that will enthral, entice, enthuse, educate and, above all else, entertain.
All the old favourites are back by popular demand but this year’s farming showcase will be enhanced by the addition of sheep racing, yes you heard it right, sheep racing, a poultry section developed beyond all recognition with 28 classes and three new trophies, additional classes in agricultural horses and sheep and a section for donkeys.
On top of that Omagh Show is the only event of its kind in Northern Ireland to host a qualifier for the RDS Breeders’ Championship while the splendid surrounds of the purpose-built Drumquin Road showgrounds will have the honour of staging the Northern Ireland Beef Shorthorn Championship.
And local schoolchildren will get the opportunity to express their views in a new public speaking competition.
The showing of livestock remains the staple of any agriculture show and this year Omagh boasts well over 300 classes with judges from across the UK and Ireland tasked with selecting the cream of the crop which will ultimately strut the stuff in the Parade of Prizewinners.
Talking of which all kinds of models will again take centre stage in 2015.
Among them the two-legged variety who will bring glamour, style and mystique to the catwalk, those who will take us for a trip down memory lane in the vintage vehicle display – this year located in Sam King’s field – and their modern counterparts, the very latest in machinery and technology that will be on display in a full house of trade stands.
Beyond that hundreds of competitors will take part in a full and varied equestrian programme which runs off over the course of both Friday and Saturday, with a barbecue and YFC tractor handling getting things under way on Friday evening.
If all that hasn’t already whetted the appetite throw into the mix home industries, the many delights and flavours of the Food Hall, the ever-popular dog show, on-stage entertainment headlined by Mick Flavin, schools section, amusements, a children’s zone and many, many more attractions, and it’s not hard to see why Omagh Show has for 175 years cemented its position in the farming calendar as arguably one of the best and biggest events of its kind outside Balmoral.
On the first weekend in July (3rd and 4th) all the craic of the country comes to town. Come join in the celebration!