Friday, September 2, 2011

Remembering the Ekka - Fun Friday

I'm still playing catch up for August so this post is about the annual Royal Brisbane Show (Ekka). Our family went on People's Day Wednesday 10th August, which is the day of the local public holiday. We only decided the night before that we might go so I had a search of the official website to see what would be the main attractions that we would want to see. We quickly decided that seeing the fireworks would be a highlight so we would go later in the day so the children wouldn't get too tired.

We decided to not tell the girls about the plan in case the weather wasn't suitable. We had planned for a kitchen designer to visit us about lunch time as well so we planned to fit things in the day OK. We wanted to leave for the Ekka at about 2:30pm. The kitchen designer did a very through job and by the end of his visit DH was hurrying him up so we could get going. He left at 2:15 and we were out the door by 2:30pm. I don't think we have ever gotten ready to go out so quickly before.

We entered near the children's sideshow alley so some rides for the girls were first on the agenda. We then headed to the dog pavilion and then the Agricultural Hall (with big displays made of fruit & veges). I remember seeing similar displays as a child. We then headed for some afternoon tea and then Animal Boulevard. There were plenty of animals on display, horses, fish, birds, ewes giving birth, beef cattle, dairy cows being milked and an animal nursery. The 4 girls really enjoyed seeing all the animals. While we were there we saw a family from school and mum who was in my Mother's group when Miss C was a baby, I haven't since her for over 6 years. A few more rides were then on the cards. Dodgems were a favourite for DH (big kid) and Miss C.

I then persuaded the rest of the family to look at the cooking and crafts displays. The decorated cakes were impressive and the other baking made us all feel hungry. I enjoyed looking at the sewing and handicrafts. The girls were interested for a while but we skipped the painting and photography sections.

Strawberry ice creams and show bags were next on the agenda but the lines for both meant a change of plans. It was time for dinner. At least one Dagwood dog (corn dog) was consumed but we didn't give in to the pleas for fairy floss. After dinner we searched for seats in the stands around the arena to watch the night program. We ended up walking to the opposite side of the arena to get seats in the third back row.
Once the family was settled I headed back to the other side of the arena to get Strawberry ice creams. I really wanted one. It would make my Ekka experience complete.
This is the official description from here.  The Ekka Strawberry Sundae is mouth-watering top to bottom-from the crunchy wafer cone to the smooth vanilla ice-cream, sweet chopped strawberries, delicious awardwinning handmade gourmet ice-cream, swirls of fresh cream and topped off with a tasty fresh Queensland strawberry.
 I search for another stand with a shorter line but I ended up in the long line waiting for 6 ice creams. I then had to very gingerly walk back to our seats, with strawberries threatening to fall and general ice cream wobbles. I am saw I was a sight. I made it back and ice creams were consumed as we watched a precision driving team, motocross stunts and Monster trucks. I could not believe how exciting my DD's were to see these motorised acts.
I missed on the National anthem and some cattle mustering. The night was finished off with a great fire works display. Miss F had the best smile on her face. She really loved it.

I am really glad that we made the effort to go with all the children. I haven't been since before children and DH took DD#1 C & #2 D 4 years ago so they didn't remember it this time. I was almost due with DD#3 and could barely walk, so I didn't go that time. I remember going with my grandparents as a child so I hope the older girls might remember this when they are older. Great memories for us anyway.