Buoyed up by support messages from Taoiseach Micheál Martin and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Defence Simon Coveney, the Cork Virtual Summer Show got under way last Saturday.
The historic occasion of the first Irish virtual agricultural show continued Sunday, with live streaming of competitions, special guests, and interviews.
Organised by the Munster Agricultural Society, the Cork Summer Show has been running for over 200 years, and the first-ever virtual show continued the event’s success, with Society Director Gerard Murphy revealing entries came from as far away as New Zealand, and the show entry fees of about €3,000 will be donated to six Irish charities.
“We have been given the challenge, from our Taoiseach Micheál Martin, to run next year’s show as both a virtual and physical show, and we intend to rise to this challenge,” said Mr Murphy. “We had great entries, and the judges enjoyed judging them on this new virtual stage.”
The show organisers welcomed the opportunity to reach a wider audience, and to run competitions not feasible in a physical showground while giving anyone all over the globe access to Cork Virtual Summer Show 2020. The wider audience was evident in the results. Only two of the seven winning cattle exhibitors were from Co Cork, with Bernadette Dunne, for example, from Martinstown, Co Kildare, winning both classes for calves born in 2020. And no fewer than five of the winning horse exhibitors were from Northern Ireland.
Igor Van Riel, Ballinora, Waterfall, Co Cork was the winner of the Ten Minute Cook-Off judged by chef Gary Burke from the Rochestown Park Hotel.
The Munster Agricultural Society thanked their show team, exhibitors, judges, sponsors, technology partner Dotser, and all who watched live streaming.
Video and photographic entries were accepted for categories including horses, ponies, donkeys, cattle, sheep, goats, pigs, poultry, floral art, plants and horticulture, the 10-minute cook-off, arts, crafts, baking, Lego/Duplo and Meccano, the Maxi Zoo pet show, agri-innovation awards, and best-dressed competitions.
Up next in the virtual show calendar is the Irish Shows Association event on Saturday, August 22. Go to irishshows.org/virtual-show to enter, before the August 4 closing date.