Smaller crowds and lower takings, but air show hailed a success

THE organisers of Soar, Ride and Shine have hailed the event a success despite lower crowd figures and lower takings than the inaugural show in 2016.

Around 6700 passed through the gates at Bathurst Airport for the two-day show on April 7-8, with many more enjoying the spectacle from outside.

While Lifeline Central West is still tallying the funds, executive director Alex Ferguson expects to “just break even” once all the bills are paid.

That could be considered a disheartening result but Mr Ferguson remains focused on the positives, saying Soar, Ride and Shine lived up to the hype and helped start some important conversations around mental health.

“SRS-18 was always designed as a platform to reinforce Lifeline’s messaging around the key components of our service – mental health, domestic violence, financial counselling and problem gambling support,” he said.

“In this regard, SRS-18 was a great success.

“Through our media partners Fairfax Media (publisher of the Western Advocate), Bathurst Broadcasters and Prime7, Lifeline has been able to address difficult personal issues in a non-judgmental way almost continuously across a three-week period.”

Mr Ferguson said the two-day event ran well except for “a little helicopter induced dust” on the Sunday.

It’s hoped Soar, Ride and Shine will return in 2020.

“SRS-18 is over for another year but Lifeline Central West’s work continues across just under half of rural regional NSW,” Mr Ferguson said.

“As we all experienced in the wind and dust last weekend, the rural scene is not good.

“If someone you know is in difficulty, don’t be embarrassed to ask if they are OK and encourage them to talk to someone they trust, their local GP or ring Lifeline 13 11 14.”

Around 8000 people attended Soar, Ride and Shine in 2016, raising around $35,000 to support the work of Lifeline Central West.