Elliston to host fastest shear event

SHEARING: On stage at the 2018 edition of the competition. Picture: Elliston Speed Shear Facebook
SHEARING: On stage at the 2018 edition of the competition. Picture: Elliston Speed Shear Facebook

Preparations are underway for next weekend's Elliston Speed Shear 2019 competition.

Shearers from across Eyre Peninsula, Australia and New Zealand will take part in the sixth staging of the event, hosted at the Elliston Sports Centre on Saturday, August 31 from 3pm.

More than $6000 in cash and prizes is up for grabs for shearers across five categories - open, intermediate, novice, veterans and the teams event - with a major prize of $2500 for the open division winner.

Prize money is being sponsored by local businesses and others from across Eyre Peninsula, incling major sponsors Fly Blowers Shearing Contractors, Scott Shearing Contractors and Kattata Well Stud at Port Kenny.

Organising committee member Jess Wilson said the anticipation was building.

"It is one of the bigger events for the year in the district and draws about 150 people," she said.

"The event was organised to bring more attention to the shearing industry on the Eyre Peninsula as the number of shearers is dwindling.

"It also helps to generate income for the town and is a fundraising event for the Elliston Football Club and the sports centre."

The event is free - with meals and drinks available from the club - and the Elliston Men's Shed will host a sausage sizzle, while Adelaide band Cosmic Fossil takes to the stage after 8pm.

Ms Wilson said volunteers would be busy over the next week helping to finalise preparations.

"The equipment and livestock used in the event is donated by local farmers; the event could not run without the assistance of our wonderful volunteers," she said.

"All round it is just a fun afternoon and night out for all, the kids always have a blast and it's great for the local farmers and shearers to get together outside of the shearing shed."