Federation Square in Melbourne’s CBD has become ‘Shepp Square’ for the next fortnight, as a hive of activities, demonstrations, entertainment and produce stalls takes over to celebrate Greater Shepparton.
For kids, the event offers a myriad of activities such as milking (pretend) cows, arts and craft with apples, a bike and blend smoothie stand where they can pedal to mix a fruity refreshment, competitions featuring food produced in the region, and much more.
The kids aren’t the only ones who will be entertained. Adults have the chance to taste wine from local vineyards, Cheeky cider, Furphy beer and other locally produced beverages, as well as sample local food and view live entertainment from lots of different performers.
“We’re always striving to be different and be at the forefront of peoples’ minds,” Cr O’Keefe said.
“Much of the region’s best local produce – including apples and pears – will be showcased. We’re not only promoting Shepparton, but also regional Victoria in general.”
Each day has a theme; examples being Foodbowl Day, Indigenous Day, Multicultural Day and The Great Outdoors Day, just to name a few.
Also showcased will be pomegranates from the largest pomegranate farm in the Southern Hemisphere, SPC factory sales and Fruitworks sales of baked beans, peaches, apples and more, and samples of honey and local olive oil.
The event will showcase Shepparton’s iconic Mooving Art and feature local Greater Shepparton artist Tank as he paints a blank cow over the two weeks.
A visitor information booth will be set up to provide information about Shepparton and what to do there.
Cr O’Keefe said that reaching a wider audience is always important for Shepparton’s council.
“When we had the opportunity to showcase what we can do in the centre of Melbourne over the school holidays, well that was one we just couldn’t let go,” she added.
Cr O’Keefe advised people visiting the event to bring lots of recycling bags to carry their produce home in, a camera for the wonderful art and displays, and most importantly, a few hours in order to truly see everything on offer.