Chairman's Wrap Up

G’day everyone,

Well, what a ride Agfest 2021 has been, from stating back in September 2020 that we will be having a crack at being back in the paddock to closing the gates on Saturday and opening the gates to the cloud for the second time around. It certainly been one for the ages.

Everything started to get real in February, our exhibitors were all notified of their site placements and allocations, working bees had once again started after a Christmas break, line marking was back up on the jobs list along with general site maintenance. March quickly flew by with lines on the ground ready for the marquees to start rolling in on the 1st of April.

April saw us push hard for an increase on our numbers cap of 10 thousand people, we partitioned public health and all government parties to no avail. On that note it would not have been possible without the amazing help from the Tasmanian Government, and I sincerely thank our elected members for their ongoing support and commitment to Agfest.

To all our exhibitors, contractors and sponsors – a huge thank you to each and every one of you for your generosity and commitment to being part of our field days. It is the small, medium and large businesses that come together to create the unique spirit of Agfest.

From bump in to bump out, most of our exhibitors and patrons understood and believed in our check in process with the Check in TAS app, our ticket system on event days and the additional crowd management requirements for social distancing. We certainly learned plenty along the way, especially when exhibitor traffic came to a standstill on the highway first thing Wednesday morning. After some slight adjustments to our internal traffic plan, we had it running like clockwork for the following three days.

We have received plenty of feedback from exhibitors and patrons on how well the four-day event went, as well as suggestions on where we can improve for following years. We are always open to discussion on how to make Agfest better, especially considering the new rules and regulations that all events are likely to be subjected to moving forward It is a new “normal”, but we have proven that large-scale events can be delivered safely and compliantly.

Agfest in the cloud was another huge success running from the 8th to the 15th of May with over 110 thousand page visits, patrons spent over 1000 hours wandering the streets of the cloud checking out all the amazing Agfest specials. People from around the world visited including people from US, UK, Germany, New Zealand and Canada.

We are already in discussions with the Public Health Department regarding patron numbers for 2022 so please rest assured that we will be working as hard as possible to achieve a large increase in ticket allocations for next year. The Agfest team will continue to update you as we move towards the 1st of October when exhibitor applications open for Agfest 2022.

For me now coming to the end of my 2nd term as chairman I can reflect back on a challenging and stressful few years. It has been an amazing journey and I could not be prouder of my committee for leading Agfest back into the paddock and in the cloud. One thing for certain is that Agfest is unbreakable, and we will be around for many years to come.

This is it for my Agfest chairman chapter and until next time stay safe and no doubt ill see you at Agfest in 2022.

Ethan Williams

Agfest Chairman 2021