Things to see and do at the 2023 Clydesdale Spectacular
There is so much to hear, smell, see and touch at the Clydesdale Spectacular! Here are just a few highlights of the program.
Clydesdales & Heavy Horses
The Clydesdale breed of horse has a long history in the Scenic Rim dating back to the 1800’s when Mr Arnold Wienholt had the Wienholt Clydesdale Stud in Maryvale, a stud of some 400 horses. The Clydesdale breed in Queensland and in the Scenic Rim has been kept alive by the Ehrich Families and their enormous history and passion for the breed. The Scenic Rim Clydesdale Spectacular showcases the best of the breed and attracts breeders from Queensland and interstate. The Clydesdale Spectacular boasts the largest prize purse in the Southern Hemisphere with the Supreme Champion Clydesdale Exhibit taking home $5,000 in cash.
The Buckol Working Dog team is very proud to demonstrate the skill of the Border Collie working breed. Their temperament and intelligence are innately suited to their job of herding stock. The working dogs demonstrate the very special connections between handler and dog, and dog and beast. Watch and learn from a lifetime of breeding, training and working dog experience.
Scottish Pipe & Drum Bands
Scottish Pipes and Drums Bands who play throughout both days lend a colourful atmosphere to this fabulous event, with every performance proclaiming the Scottish ancestry of the Scenic Rim. The Amberley Pipes & Drums, and the Warwick Thistle Pipe Bands are faithful regulars, with other guest Bands appearing. If there’s a drop of Scottish blood coursing through your veins, or if you’re simply drawn to the drone of the pipes and drums, their music alone makes the SRC Spectacular worthwhile attending!! You’ll be treated to the continuous air of many a lively Scottish Highland reel (dance) or the hauntingly beautiful lament of the pipes, with the exciting thump or slow and deliberate march of the drums.
The proud Clan colours and the swing of the pleated tartan kilts are a visual feast to behold. The Piperswear full Scottish Highland dress in proud display of its symbolism. From the meticulously draped and fixed Pipers Plaid, the Feather Bonnet, the horse hair sporran, the dirks, the jewels and the buckles, it is truly a display of spectacular Gaelic tradition.
The Blacksmiths at Clydesdale Spectacular entertain all weekend with their constant and precise tapping on the anvil. You can hear them as you approach, watch them work methodically at their trade and lose track of time as you see them forge their creations. You can even take home something that has been hand made on the day.
The rare and dying trade of wheelwrighting is kept alive for posterity in the Scenic Rim by our very own Wheelwright, Rick Stanfield. A wheelwright is a skillful craftsman who builds and repairs wooden wheels, especially those for horse drawn vehicles. The SRCS is proud to showcase a unique fire & steam demonstration on site. The wheelwright prepares the hub, the spokes and the wooden felloes (outer rim) before the event, taking many a long hour to hone, shape and precision dowel them strongly together.
At the event, our master wheelwright first build’s his fire for the steel ring. When the hot coals are just the right temperature, the wheelwright and his team begin an almost choreographed “ballet” around the fire. The wheelwright is ready to masterfully render his steel rim malleable enough to fit it tightly and permanently to his wooden wheel, the tossing of water starts and a constant flow of steam billows. The sight and sounds of the wheelwright, working frenetically with his hot metal rim, the “chink, chink” of his smithy’s tools, the hiss and smell of the rising steam, are indeed evocative of another time in history.
The Clydie Spectacular Woodchop has become one of our most popular events. Always held on the Sunday of the event weekend, a full day of Woodchop Competition is hard to miss. We’ll strategically locate this event close to the Scenic Rim Clydesdale Spectacular canteen, just so you don’t have to move far to feed and water yourself if you just can’t bear to miss the action and shimmer of a swinging axe. The Woodchop event is open to the whole family with events for axemen and axewomen, as well as junior events for the kids.
Australian Light Horse
Don’t miss this event - The Australian Light Horse troupe in their full military regalia is fast and exciting action. The Light Horsemen perform precision displays of Skill-at-Arms with Tent Pegging, Gallows (Tilting the Ring) and Turk’s Head. These riders and their mounts share a very special bond, and the skill involved in perfecting these displays takes much dedication and practice.
Billy Boiling - World Championship
Billy Boiling at the Scenic Rim Clydesdale Spectacular is so much fun!! Anyone is welcome to enter this event, held on the Sunday of the weekend. There is a clear set of rules for competitors and it’s a race to see who can boil their Billy in the fastest time. The World Champions and World Record holders can be found in our Honour Board section of the website.
Qld Whip Cracking Championships
The Queensland Whip Cracking Championship is held annually at the Clydesdale Spectacular. The passionate members of AWPA (Australian Whip Plaiters Association), hold a full day of competition on the Saturday of the event. There is competition for Men, Ladies, Juniors, Over 45’s and the Pee Wees. The Bullock Whip event is hotly contested each year. So too is the Whip Cracking Accuracy event. Check out our Honour Board page on the website to see all the past and current SRCS champions.
Friesian Performance Troupe
The regal, costumed ladies of the Friesian Performance Troupe present a spectacular, colourful show on horseback. Their display consists of cleverly choreographed routines of horse movement, synchronized to music. The Troupe performs at walk, trot and canter with amazing poise of rider in unison with rhythmic, fluid ‘dance’ of feet by their obliging equine companions.
The Friesian Horse is an ancient breed originating from Friesland in the Netherlands. These horses simply love performing, and after the show, for a very special hands-on experience, the ladies of the Troupe welcome kids – big and small – to pat their gentle giants.
The Boonah Pie Cart
Come and try a Haggis Pie at the Boonah Pie Cart! Haggis is traditional Scottish Fayre and truly delicious. Be early for a Haggis Pie – always first flavour to sell out. The Pie Cart also offers a hearty beef pie and a scrumptious lamb pie. This unique Cart was built and handcrafted by Rick Stanfield, our local wheelwright who plies his rare trade in the Wheelwrighting Demonstration on Saturday & Sunday.
The Teviot Clydesdale team of Clydesdales offer carriage rides in the main arena all weekend. This ride might just transport you back to memories of the past if you’re old enough to remember when the horse and carriage were essential to country life; or simply be an amazing experience for a first time ride on a horse drawn carriage. The three abreast Clydesdales - Billy, Bobby & Bluey - will safely drive you around for a lasting memory of the Clydesdale Spectacular.
The Scottish Caber Toss - what could be more fun than throwing a large pole of timber? The Caber Toss is a popular crowd highlight at the Clydesdale Spectacular, with all comers welcome to test their strength and accuracy. For the uninitiated, our very own Scotsman, Ken Scott, is on hand to coach prospective entrants in the readily mastered techniques.
The term “caber” is a Gaelic word meaning raft or beam. Legend surrounding the origin of the caber toss tells of breaching barriers or crossing streams during wartime. In the rugged Scottish Highland, the caber was tossed from one side of the freezing streams to the other to quickly create a makeshift bridge allowing fellow Scotsmen to cross and continue their pursuit of rival clans. This is why the caber is tossed for accuracy, rather than distance.
Terry Goodear's Harnessing Demonstration
Come and meet one of the most skilful reinsmen in the country. Terry Goodear has a lifetime experience in the horse industry and worked for Carlton United Breweries as their Head Clydesdale Teamster for 26 years. After holding the reins of a team of 8 beautiful big Clydesdales for most of his career, Terry will show you how and what is involved in steering such a powerful team of Clydies. So generous with his time and knowledge, Terry is always about to say G'day and pass on his wisdom. We are so lucky to have Terry demonstrating at the Clydesdale Spectacular, make sure you don't miss him in the schedule.
There is not much this man doesn't know about harness and driving Clydesdales!