The Guyra Lamb and Potato Festival is a vehicle which enables local people to get together and display/promote their goods and services, and Guyra, to the general public. It’s held at Rotary Park, which is lined with stall after stall, full of everything imaginable.
Guyra, ‘Top of the Range’ is centrally located between the major population centres of the New England Region, and tourists staying in Guyra are within easy reach of a wide variety of attractions.
Clean air, beautiful gardens, historic unique natural attractions, and a friendly atmosphere. Guyra, a town of about 2,000 people, is located in the heart of the New England Tablelands, midway between Sydney and Brisbane on the New England Highway. At 1,320 metres above sea level, Guyra is the highest town on the Tablelands. This gives tourists staying in Guyra exposure to a wide variety of attractions, with the next drawcard being The Guyra Lamb and Potato Festival.
Held every year during the last week of January, Guyra’s Lamb and Potato Festival is building a reputation with 1,000s of holiday travellers for the delicious lamb and potato meals served during the period. Over the week a wide variety of interesting and tasty meals are provided for lunch and tea. The aim is to show just how tasty, interesting, and healthy these meals can be. Each day, more than 100 lambs and 350 kg of potatoes are consumed over the 10 day period.
Information on the preparation of meals and facts about lamb are available during the week. Lots of other activities and displays are organised for each day of the festival, which is held on the highway right next to our lamb sculpture.
The produce showcased at the festival definitely has to be from Guyra.
However, the festival isn’t all about cooked lamb.
The festival also includes sheep shearing demonstrations, sheep dog displays and an antique machinery show, and vintage cars will also be arriving at the event.
There is a tent in full operation, where artists come from all over the region to showcase their musical abilities. Many people stop in at the Guyra Festival on the way to or from the Tamworth Country Music Festival, which is on at the same time.
A very popular segment is the Talent Search. Any age may enter! Live music plays all day for your enjoyment, and buskers also arrive from the Tamworth Country Music Festival.
“The festival started with humble beginnings 23 years ago, when a group of graziers and growers started it up with just a tent and a basic barbecue.”
The festival draws sellers from as far off as Western Australia. In contrast, some arrive from no particular place at all.
Kitchenware seller Paul Oliver comes from Bundaberg, but it’s really “only a mailing address, because we do in excess of 30 shows a year around Australia.”
Mr Oliver said he and his wife never got to use their house, so they traded it in for life in a caravan. Guyra Shire Council agrees the event is a great boost to the small community. Secretary Julie Gittoes said she loves the festival because of what it gives back. “All the money goes back into our community,” Mrs Gittoes said. “We help … 32 or 33 different charities. We do it for our town; we are proud of our town and we’re proud of our prime products.”
This year the festival starts on January 16, and runs again for 10 days. Come along, and taste local premium lamb and fresh potatoes in a number of delicious ways. With lamb dinners, pies, burgers, and potatoes done in all sorts of ways.
Everyone is welcome to this community fundraiser, the Guyra Lamb and Potato Festival, Rotary Park, on the New England Highway in Guyra.
While visiting the Shire area, you can also find a unique and diverse blend of recreational activities and facilities, from relaxed farm stays, bed and breakfasts, trout fishing, horse riding, bird watching, fossicking, bush walks through our beautiful National Parks and reserves, museums, scenic picnic areas and local parks. Or simply stroll down the main street and browse through some of our specialty shops, such as the old book and memorabilia shop, an antique shop, art and craft shops, nurseries, or enjoy a hearty meal at our cozy country style coffee shops, cafés, restaurants, hotels/motels, and much more.
Historically the Guyra area has supported and continues to support extensive rural timber and mining industries. Guyra produces a tremendous range of goods and services, from farm stays to tree planters, Trout fishing to Alpacas, and even pet food to weighing scales.
We look forward to seeing you at the 2009 Guyra Lamb and Potato Festival.