Newcastle Regional Show must go on

NEWCASTLE Regional Show organisers are continuing to roll with the punches and have adapted their program after show day holidays were knocked back in Newcastle and Lake Macquarie.

Both local government areas have been gazetted as local event days by the state government, despite Lake Macquarie councillors voting in favour of the holiday.

The show's organisers have adapted by extending the hours of the show on Friday and Saturday nights to 11pm.

The gates will still close at 9pm but the extra time will give those coming straight from school or work more time to enjoy the rides in sideshow alley.

This year's theme is fitness-based, titled "Fun, Fit & Fab".

Many classic elements of the show will remain, including 95 exhibitions, 62 vendors and $30 million worth of rides.

Argenton brothers Jarrah Brown, 4, and Ashton, 2, love the animals that flock to the show every year.

The Brown family usually show Staffordshire bull terriers every year, but will take a break this year.

Organisers have targeted a younger market at this year's show.

Hunter manufacturing exhibition Skills On Show will return for its fourth appearance, with the Young Innovator Award added to the program.

Young people aged between 16 and 25 can pitch their idea on an A4 piece of paper and drop it off to any NAB branch, with the winner to take away $500 and tickets to the DIG Festival.

Schools have also entered the Show Your True Colours cooking competition, with categories for primary and high school students.

A DJ and light show are also on offer nightly from 9pm until 10.30pm.

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