Meet one of the faces behind successful country shows

Country shows are an essential part of living in rural and remote areas, and an essential part of any country show is the rides, food trucks and sideshow alley. 

But what about the people who run the rides or serve the dagwood dogs? 

For the past 45 years, David Hodgson has worked the show circuit and, at this year’s Cowra Show has brought along rides such as the Hurricane and Cha Cha, which travel either by truck or road train. 

Known as “showies”, David and his family travel in their caravan to more than 40 shows – big and small - each year. 

“We go to Victoria, NSW, QLD, Northern Territory. I love living in the caravan, I wouldn’t have it any other way, I could be retired, I’d still be in the caravan.”

David operates the Hurricane and says many people recognise him from year to year. 

“They say to us, ‘you were here when I was a kid’, they are taking their kids on the rides now,” he said. 

He believes there is still a place for country shows in small communities. 

“People are saying the shows are dying but I don’t think so, some are a bit quieter but some are bigger and better than ever,” he said. 

“I like the country shows, we do Sydney and all that but I’d rather be out here.”

David said the typical week could involve hundreds of kilometres of travel before a quick construction of rides before tearing it all down and hitting the road again, meeting new and old faces along the way. 

“You gotta start at the bottom here, just the labouring. You gotta work hard, when we are on the go, doing two shows a week, it’s pretty full on.”

Despite the hard work, David said he wouldn’t trade it for the world. 

“We are all members of the Showmen’s Guild of Australia, they keep on the top of the running of things,” he said. 

“Everyone gets looked after. It’s a good life, wouldn’t change it for quids.”

Cowra Show Rodeo

This year’s rodeo will feature Australia’s top three saddle bronc riders, the first and second rated ladies barrel riders, the 2nd rated bull rider in the country and the 3rd and 4th best bareback riders. 

Demolition Derby

Last year’s winner of the Demolition Derby, Matt Falconer, will be back to defend his title on Saturday night against five other cars. 

The action will kick off after 6.45pm at the Showground. Thanks to major sponsor Hartland Rural Cowra Landmark and minor sponsor Cowra Laundry. Car entries accepted until 3pm on the day.