Mudgee Small Farms Feild Days

!5th -16th July find us at B30 in the Founders Pavilion

AREC was originally known as the Mudgee Smll Farm Field Days Co-Operative and changed it’s name when the organisation moved from the Mudgee Showground to it’s own exhibition centre at the current site.

The Mudgee Small Farm Field Days have been staged for over 30 years and since the first edition in 1977 the event, initially staged at the local Mudgee Showgrounds, and the organisation have grown to the point now where AREC owns it’s own dedicated exhibition site, receives no outside funding and is a major contributor to the community.

What started out as the brainchild of the local NSW Department of Agriculture Agronomist (Gerry Hennessy) & Horticulturist (Clarrie Beckingham) along with local farmer Mike Cox is now one of the premier field day events in Australia drawing upwards of 25,000 people and 450 exhibitors over the 2 days of the event every July providing a significant boost to the local economy. Initially they anticipated 100 people turning up, 600 was closer the mark and the event just snowballed from there. They rightly figured it was better to answer a question once to a hundred people in person rather than trying to answer 100 times to voices on the other end of an overworked office telephone.

These 3 gentlemen recognised that the missing ingredient in the flow of people onto smaller acreages and “lifestyle” blocks was education on how to manage and prosper on your own piece of land and that central element, education & information, is still the driver behind the Mudgee Small Farms Field Days today. These new “small farmers” (“blockies” to the locals) were in one almighty hurry to know how to build a fence, milk a cow, rear a calf, sow pastures, build yards, mark calves, tan hides, make gates, ride horses, train working dogs, rear hens, cook meat, bake bread etc and do it all in 2 days! It didn’t matter that it took most career farmers a lifetime to acquire these skills, these guys were in one big hurry and still are.

The initial idea, education and information, is still the driver behind the event today and visitors to the filed days can still access many free demonstrations, lectures and seminars on subjects as diverse as farm management to rose pruning!

Today AREC plays host to a number of community events and provides excellent, flexible hire facilities from small conference and lecture rooms right up to our large exhibition building named the Founders Pavilion.