WHILE the Orange Show is struggling to the point that the city is being warned the annual event's future can't be guaranteed, the Royal Bathurst Show is looking to be on firmer ground.
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Local show president Colin McPhee says volunteers are starting to come in and preparations are in hand with less than a month now until the Bathurst event.
It was reported this week that visitor numbers have been dropping and gate takings have been decreasing over recent years in Orange.
What is usually a two-day show for Bathurst's neighbour will be just a one-day event this year, to be held on May 14.
"It's our 150th show this year, so we want it to be really good, but it's a make or break event for the community at the same time," Orange Show Society volunteer manager of social media, promotions and designs Rebecca Blandford said.
"Either this is the end of the show after this year for a little bit, or it's going to be a turning point."
Mr McPhee said Orange, like Bathurst, would be reliant on those who gave their time.
"There is no big money in the show," he said. "We survive on volunteers."
He said those volunteers were starting to come in now to offer their help and others who have volunteered previously are being contacted by the show society.
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Mr McPhee said some people had been having trouble finding the show office, so he wanted to let the community know that the office was now behind the grandstand at the showground.
"People are slowly finding us," he said. "We're not in the forefront of the showground."
The Royal Bathurst Show will be held from Friday, April 29 to Sunday, May 1.
"Things are starting to rev up," Mr McPhee said. "It's full preparation now - the show is only a month away."
After a cancellation in 2020 due to COVID, there were concerns about the 2021 Royal Bathurst Show due to it being held on the same weekend as Bathurst's NRL match on the Saturday.
In the end, though, Mr McPhee described the crowd at the show's fireworks on the Saturday night last year as "one of the biggest I've seen".
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