COLBINABBIN FARMERS PICNIC (ON THE HILL)
A favourite event in the late 1800's to early 1900's
This silo features a depiction of the Colbinabbin Farmers' Picnic in the late 19th century.
Originally organised by the German settlers, the Farmers’ Picnic was held on the Mount Camel range in a 640 acre paddock on John Winter’s estate, and later at the Colbinabbin recreation reserve.
It commenced in 1878 and for sixty years, was held on the birthday of the Prince of Wales. Funds raised at the picnics benefited regional hospitals and local building projects such as the Colbinabbin Memorial Hall.
As early as the 1880’s large crowds of up to two thousand people attended each year. Visitors arriving from Rushworth and beyond came by steam train, then walked up the hill to the picnic. People from Elmore even rode bicycles to the venue. Most families, all of whom were dressed in their ‘best’ clothes, travelled by horse and gig.
Highlights included a tarpaulin covered portable dance floor of 100 square feet with brass bands, including the Rushworth Brass Band providing music until 5.30am.
A publican’s booth and many food stalls fed the crowds, whilst a merry go round, sideshows and games provided entertainment.
Horse racing, bicycle races, foot racing, obstacle races, hurdles and jumps, sack races and tug-of-war provided ample competition and excitement.