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Central District took home the best display and people’s choice awards in the District Exhibits competition at the Sydney Royal Show.
The district also got a perfect score for its lettuce, grown by Matthew and Courtney Milicevic of Kempsey, and won the tomatoes with a score of 8/9, grown by Ricardoes Tomatoes, Port Macquarie.
Central also won champions for its honey, preserves and miscellaneous fruits and vegetables, said manager Diana Lisle.
A mixed season across the district didn’t stop them chasing down the “best of the best”, Ms Lisle said.
She said the district had been very dry on the east side, but recently a lot of coastal areas, such as Port Macquarie, had seen huge downpours of rain.
“We’ve had a difficult time, especially sourcing potatoes this year, either they were cooked or they were flooded, so we had to go to some high ground that was dry in between the two to find them,” she said.
“The competition is about excellence in produce from all the different courts, so obviously, we were out there to get the best of the best.
“We made lots of phone calls and travelled many kilometres, sent lots of emails and were just trying to find contacts for who was growing what in what areas.
“It’s a huge contribution from a lot of people who do a lot of hours.”
Overall, the team consisted of about 100 people, with 50 coming to the show to set up the court.
Set up took 10 days, and three trucks worth of produce and goods.
The court’s theme was crop circles, and was designed by their new designer, Khristine Moore.
Ms Moore said it was inspired by the wonder that surrounds crop circles, which just appear overnight and are always mathematically correct.
“(The design allows) people to experience the wonder and mystery of the crop circle through the miraculous bounty of earth’s food,” Ms Moore said.
“I’m very excited with the win, absolutely over the moon and very excited for Central we are a great team.
“I’m so happy and it’s going to be a very hard act to follow for next year so I’m going to have to get my thinking cap on for next year right now.”