Tullamore birthday bash draws 60,000 for rural celebration
More than 60,000 spectators turned out to celebrate the Tullamore Show's 25th birthday bash on the vast 250-acre Butterfield Estate in Co Offaly yesterday.
Despite a misty morning start, the rain stayed at bay as visitors, participants, exhibitors and organisers demonstrated the strength and vitality of all things agricultural.
The AIB National Live show featured impressive dairy, pedigree and commercial cattle, sheep shearing, sheepdog and poultry competitions, with a total prize fund of €168,000.
Pigs also made their Tullamore Show debut as they vied for the 'All-Ireland Pig Champion' crown.
Other highlights included more than 700 exhibitor areas, a country music jamboree starring Michael English, cooking tutorial with celebrity chef Nevin Maguire, over 700 trade stands, a rare animal breed corner and flower, needle work and art exhibitions.
Officially opening the show, Andrew Doyle, Minister of State for Food, Forestry and Horticulture, urged young professionals to "get involved" in farming.
"In a year like this when there's been challenges across the commodity sectors, we need to remember that without a vibrant primary production sector, the rest of the chain falls down," he said.