FOR the first time in its history, the Clunes Show, which was due to celebrate its 160th anniversary this year has been cancelled due to COVID-19.
The Clunes and District Agricultural Show committee made the decision on Thursday night on the basis there was just too much uncertainty regarding how the show would be able to proceed on the planned November 21 date.
It is the second major blow to the Clunes community this year after the loss of Clunes Booktown which was one of the first festivals to be cancelled after COVID-19 restricitons took hold .
It comes as the Ballarat Agricultural Society remains hopeful, rather than confident of being able to run its own November show.
Clunes and District Agricultural Show secretary Gayle Wrigley said there was a host of factors and uncertainty which had forced the committee's hand.
"We are one of the later ones, but there were so many issues, we don't know what social distancing will look like for volunteers and our patronage," she said.
"How do you keep people at distances? There's also concerns about sponsorship and financial concerns.
"There are a lot of businesses that are doing it tough, and if those business are doing it tough, what is the patronage going to be like if people are not able to afford it?"
Mrs Wrigley said the multitude of unknowns had forced the committee's hand.
"This was to be our 160th anniversary and we desperately wanted to put on a good show.
"Losing event such as this effects every angle to the town. For example, a number of our community groups use the show as one of their major fundraisers, they run stalls, have food, it's a huge fundraising opportunity which impacts everyone in the town."
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