Primex attracts 55,000
ALSTONVILLE'S Fiona Monti convinced her kids to go to bed last Friday night by promising them a trip to Primex the next morning.
It's not what you'd expect for an event originally built around farmers and farm equipment, but Ms Monti and her family are part of the growing numbers that delivered Primex its biggest crowds in its 26-year history.
Director Bruce Wright said early estimates put crowd numbers for Thursday, Friday and Saturday at a combined total of about 55,000, with half of those people turning up at Casino on Saturday.
That compares with Primex's previous record of 50,000, set at last year's 25th anniversary event.
Mr Wright said attendances on Saturday were boosted by the perfect winter weather, but beyond that organisers had been working hard at increasing the appeal of the event.
“We have been averaging between seven and 10 per cent growth each year – this year it's probably about 10pc,” he said.
The number of exhibitors at this year's event soared to about 500 from last year's high of about 435, with close to 1000 companies represented across those stalls.
Ms Monti said Primex had become a fixture in her family's annual calendar.
“My mother and father-in-law are cane farmers ... we come every year, it's a family outing,” she said.
“When we first started coming it was very machinery-oriented, now it's much more.
“The kids love it. They get a steak sandwich and they climb over the tractors.”