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Sydney Showground celebrates 20 years of Big Experiences at Sydney Olympic Park

Posted on : 01 February 2018

20 years ago this week, then Premier Bob Carr handed over the keys to the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW as it took possession of the brand new Sydney Showground, ending more than 100 years at Moore Park.

The move was of course a precursor to Sydney’s hosting of the 2000 Olympic Games with Sydney Olympic Park the focus of international attention.

The new Sydney Showground would feature 22 new exhibition and event spaces across 30 hectares, the focal point being the main arena.

Across the past 20 years Sydney Showground has hosted Royalty, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in 2014, annual Sydney Royal Easter Shows, some attracting a million guests in a single year and hundreds of local and international exhibitions including the huge Reed AIMEX (Mining ) Expo.

Evidence of the excellence in customer service the Sydney Showground team provides is in the fact the very first exhibition client of the Sydney Showground, Sydney Olympic Park, the AGHA Sydney Gift Fair will return this month and has been an exhibitor every year since 1998.

Sydney Showground continues to be the “go to” venue for Trade and Consumer events & exhibitions, Music Festivals and Incentive Events.

Each year the variety and scope of these events continues to widen together with more hotels, better parking, regular train service and dozens of new bars and restaurants, all making Sydney Olympic Park a great destination.

Not only has the Sydney Showground been the home of the likes of the NRL’s Sydney Bulldogs, AFL’s GWS Giants, T20 Cricket’s Sydney Thunder and Football’s Western Sydney Wanderers, but this year alone will attract more international visitors and exposure by hosting high profile events such as X Games, the Irish Festival and the first hurling match ever held outside Ireland and has just been named as a host venue for the ICC Women’s T20 cricket World Cup in 2020.

Sydney Showground General Manager Peter Thorpe says he never ceases to be proud of the number and variety of events Sydney Showground hosts;

“Sydney Showground is a constantly evolving canvas,” Peter Thorpe said.

“Every day there is a new idea or concept to challenge our team’s creativity and the amount of different industry awards won by the whole team over the years is testament to their success and ‘can do’ attitude.

“We would like to thank all of our loyal clients and guests for your support across the last exciting 20 years and look forward to many more years of creative events,” he said.

Over two decades, the Sydney Showground team has had many highlights, including:

1998 Sydney Showground opens for business and welcomes 295 events in its inaugural years!

2000 Hosts Olympic sports including baseball and rhythmic gymnastics and the Media Centre for 6,000 journalists.

2003-2005 NSW Winner ‘Speciality Meeting Venue’, Meetings & Events Australia (MEA).

2007 Sydney Showground entered the MEA Hall of Fame after winning its third MEA National Award for Catering and Banqueting Services.

2009 The inaugural Telstra 500 V8 Supercars drew more than 185,000 attendees over 3 days.

2010 Big Day Out celebrated its 100th Show with 55,000 people on one day.

2011 Sydney Showground awarded ‘Best Venue Team’ by Exhibition & Event Association of Australasia (EEAA) at the Annual Awards for Excellence.

2012 The Main Arena upgrade was completed, taking capacity from 13,000 to 24,000; the GWS Giants played their first home game at the Stadium.

2014 One of the largest international conventions to visit Sydney – the International Rotary Convention – with 19,000 delegates in attendance; Exhibition Hall was officially opened by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge at the Sydney Royal Easter Show.

2015 Sydney Showground partnered with Cricket NSW to be the home of the Sydney Thunder cricket team for the next ten years; Winner ‘Best Venue Team’ awarded by EEAA.

2016 Winner ‘Best Achievement in Venue Management’ - Australian Event Awards; State and  National Winner ‘Banqueting and Catering’ – MEA; Winner ‘Corporate Social Responsibility’ – MEA.

2017 International events, including the Maruti Suzuki International Dealer Incentive, Sheung Hei International Gala Dinner and the Asian Paints Incentive Dinner.

Roger White                   

Manager, Public Relations

Royal Agricultural Society of NSW
t 02 9704 1453 m 0478 092 425 e rwhite@rasnsw.com.au