The History of the Show

Atherton’s community formed the Barron Valley Agricultural Pastoral and Industrial Association in 1903. William Marnane was the first chairman. The Association hosted the first Atherton Show on 20th and 21st June 1904 on the site of the present showgrounds. The show has continued to be held annually except for in 1925 and in three years during World War 2 when the showgrounds were under army control.

The showgrounds have been improved over the years. A grandstand and oval were constructed in 1918. In 1934/35, ring lighting, fencing and seating were added. As a result of Army occupation of the showgrounds from 1942 to 1945, an igloo was erected on the site. After the war, the igloo was secured at a bargain price by the Show Society.

This igloo has since been improved and expanded, and is known as Merrilands Hall.

A special feature of the 2001 show was the Centenary of Federation Grand Parade where individuals, schools and other community groups dressed up and joined in the parade to depict events in each decade of the past century.

The backdrop to The Atherton Show… The seven sisters, featured in our logo, snapped by¬†Ben Cashell Imagery

Photo Gallery

First Atherton Show 1904 – left hand view of the showgrounds

First Atherton Show 1904 – right hand view of the showgrounds

Dairy Cattle exhibit early Atherton Show

State Farm Aryshire cattle exhibit at early Atherton Show. Now known as Kairi Research Station, the State Farm was established in 1903.

Millie Weare jumping her horse “Rocket” side saddle at the Atherton Show about 1911.

Different uniforms of the fire services this century.

Horse team were important in the early timber industry.

The 2001 show brought thousands of people into Atherton.

Marking the Chinese contribution to establishing agriculture on the Tableland 1911 – 1920.