AgriKidsNZ has run alongside The National Bank Young Farmer Contest for the past six years and the Competition has always been very popular in the Otago/Southland Region: you just have to remember back to the turn out for last year’s Grand Final to know that.
The Otago/Southland Regional Final for 2011 takes place in Winton this weekend and such an unprecedented number of entries have been received that for the first time ever at a Regional Final, AgriKidsNZ has to run over two days.
AgriKidsNZ Assistant Manager Rosie Todhunter has been blown away by the number of entries she’s received and says it’s around double of what’s normally expected at a Regional Final.
“It’s really amazing to see the number of AgriKids Competitors increasing every year; but we’ve been completely blown away by the response in 2011.”
“We have nearly 60 teams – that’s 180 children – which means some schools have to take time off school to come and compete at the Winton Racecourse on Friday from 2pm.”
The rest of the teams will compete on Saturday morning alongside The National Bank Young Farmer Contest as planned.
“It’s great to see the level of commitment – some teams have to start competing at 7.15 on Saturday morning and some are coming from as far as Balclutha for the Competition.”
2010 saw the addition of another exciting competition to The National Bank Young Farmer Contest family. The TeenAg pilot was held in Southland last year, and after a very successful outing, the Competition was rolled out nationally this year.
TeenAg Assistant Manager Annie Barnes attributes the success of the pilot in Southland to the high numbers of entries in the Otago/Southland Regional Final this year.
“We’ll have 30 teams competing at the racecourse this Saturday. It’s fantastic to see such a good turnout, and some of these Competitors have some experience from last year – it’s going to be a fiercely contested Competition.“