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Saturday 28th September 2024 - 10am to 5pm


The first Dapto Show was held on 28 January 1857 at Dapto Steam Flour Mills site, which was kindly provided for use by Mr John Brown, the owner.

Fine weather prevailed for the opening show and the event gave rise to a great deal of interest from resident’s miles around. The farmers and their wives laboured with exemplary zeal to prepare exhibits and a worthy display that would favourably compare with the shows in rivalling neighbouring centres of Wollongong and Kiama. 

The sale yards at the rear of the Dapto Hotel, were used for showing the horses and cattle and other livestock exhibits, whilst grain, butter, and other farm produce were displayed on the ground floor of the mill, across the road, and fruit and flowers on the first floor and balcony of the same building.

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Entries received totalled 355, and exhibitors numbered 65. Dairy cattle formed the leading feature of the show, surpassing all other sections in quality and numbers. Livestock consisted of 18 draught horses,15 blood horses, 102 head of horned cattle, and 10 pigs.


Butter was a creditable display, resulting in the dairying industry being well represented from around Dapto. In grains, which was a weak point for the present-day shows made a nice display, rye grass, malting barley, Cape barley, oats, maize, and wheat were the principal exhibits, which was positive given farmers in the area were transitioning from wheat to dairy due to disease rust.  

Overall, the show was described as a remarkable success.

The second show was held on the same site, but, profiting by the experience of the first year, the committee supplied extra accommodation in the form of tents for the display of exhibits, which were vastly increased compared to the first show. 

In 1879 the society leased a show ground and erected a pavilion and cattle yards upon it. The leased property was in Brownsville, known as Show Point, and belonged to Miss Brown.

The Show was held on this site for a further decade or more, when in the last 1800s the society came into possession of its own show ground, through the generosity of Mr. P. H. Osborne who gave ten acres of land for the purpose. The new site was a little over a mile from the old flour mill and located in centre of Dapto town. Apart from being rather small in comparison to the previous site, it was well suited for show purposes, and was greatly improved by the planting of ornamental trees, the erection of a galvanised iron pavilion and sheds, and the construction of a ring, and scores of substantial stalls and yards for stock.

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After 50 years of consecutive shows, the A&H Society was the first institution of its kind to celebrate Jubilee. The weather was perfect for the two-day event with a pleasing number of entries, exhibits and attendees.


For more than one hundred years since, the show continues to be the largest community event in the Dapto area, held every year apart from during the war and a few cancellations due to bad weather, insurance issues and the COVID19 pandemic.  

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