THE annual country show is earmarked on the calendars of many people living in rural communities, however this year, many show committees have made the difficult decision to cancel their events due to the uncertain nature of the coronavirus and ongoing restrictions.

Northern Agricultural Shows Association (NASA) secretary, Helen Schiller, said while some shows were undecided, a number had already made the difficult decision to cancel for 2020.

“This is certainly a challenging time and something we have never encountered before.”

Helen also said some state cooking competitions held within NASA had also been cancelled.

Shows to have cancelled already include the Royal Adelaide Show and Kadina, and NASA shows of Wilmington, Quorn, Burra, Kapunda, Gawler, and as of Sunday night, Balaklava.

Balaklava Show president, Callum March, said it was the uncertainty of the whole thing and financial risk that forced the committee to cancel this year’s show.

It is believed it’s the first time since WWII the Balaklava Show has been cancelled.

“Once the Adelaide Show cancelled, followed by the Murray Bridge Show which is on the same day as ours, it pretty much signalled what would happen,” he said.

“Planning for us starts in May, and we have to organise and print the program, contact sponsors, judges, and stallholders – and in the current climate, we didn’t know if any stallholders would want to book a site,” he said.

“Running the show involves a lot of work, and with a lack of time to plan, and all of the unknowns, the financial risk was just too great.”

“Restrictions, including crowd numbers, could still be in or come back at any time – and with thousands usually attending the show, it’s a potential issue.”

“It’s a shame, but out of our control,” he said.

“But we look forward to a bigger and better show again in 2021.”