Deniliquin Ute Muster organisers are tipping this weekend could attract a record crowd, as long as the weather stays fine.ZOE MCMAUGH AND TYLA HARRINGTON September 25, 2012 4:45pm
Organisers believe this weekend’s Deniliquin Ute Muster crowd could be the biggest in the event’s history.
With international superstar Kelly Clarkson as the headline act, and with fingers crossed for some sunny weather, Play on the Plains Festival general manager John Harvie says world records could be broken.
A record attendance of about 25,000 people at the muster was reached in 2010 when Aussie rock legends Cold Chisel re-formed to headline the event.
Acting muster marketing manager Karla Notley said ticket sales were on par with last year’s event, which reached about 18,000, but with mostly fine weather predicted she expects gate ticket sales to soar.
‘‘If it’s beautiful weather we’ll have thousands at the gates.
‘‘It’s going to be huge, especially when we’ve got people like Kelly Clarkson, (Australian rock band) The Living End and Joe Nichols.’’
Saturday is predicted to be mostly sunny with a small chance of some passing showers.
There is a prediction of 10-20mm of rain on Friday, but an expected top temperature of 25°C should please muster goers, who had already started arriving at the weekend.
Miss Notley said Muster HQ was hectic with visitors yesterday as the buzz starts to build in anticipation.
Mr Harvie said the general feeling was that the Bluey Singlet World Record Count of 3500 would be broken, but admitted the World Record Ute Count may be a little more difficult.
‘‘I think it’s a big ask to break the ute record, which stands at 10,152 (from 2010).
‘‘But if we get enough people there with their utes, it could still be a possibility.
‘‘I think the blue singlets is certainly do-able, especially with the weather expected to be better than last year.
‘‘It would be great if everyone wears their blue singlets and gets into the arena — and we’ll be pushing for that.’’
Improvements to the muster site, including a new state-of-the-art concert stage, are also expected to attract more patrons this year.
The new stage dwarfs the former main stage, and both will operate in tandem over the Friday and Saturday night concerts.
The new steel structure is 13m high, 50m long and 16m deep. It was designed to cater for international musical acts and also allows for a more seamless evening of musical entertainment, Miss Notley said.
‘‘There’s no breaks between acts,’’ she said.
‘‘It makes the concert better as the stage is higher and bigger, everyone is going to see the acts.’’
This is Miss Notley’s first ever Deniliquin Ute Muster, and she said she ‘‘can’t wait’’. She came to Deniliquin from Sydney this year when marketing manager Liz Mecham went on maternity leave.
‘‘I’m really excited .
Other entertainment for the weekend includes the tractor pull, Australian National Circle Work Championships, Bull Ride Spectacular, aerial motorbike daredevils and the AFL Grand Final between Hawthorn and Sydney live on the giant TV screen on Saturday afternoon.
For more information or to purchase tickets, go to www.deniutemuster.com.au.
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Local athletes will go head-to-head with some of the best competitors from around the world in swimming and athletics in December.
District residents and visitors will be able to enjoy some of the region’s most beautiful private gardens on Sunday.
The 116th annual Cobram Show went off with a bang at the weekend, drawing in crowds from far and wide for two days of fun.
Tomorrow is a Total Fire Ban day in Deniliquin, meaning no fires can be lit in the open and all fire permits are suspended.
Fifty new full-time jobs will be created at Tatura with a multimillion-dollar expansion of the abattoirs expected to be announced today.
Remembering Australian political giant Gough Whitlam who once called on Benalla police to stop then Treasurer Frank Crean on his journey up the Hume to phone the PM.
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