The Morobe Show is Lae City’s premier event.
It is held at the Lae Showground in the heart of Lae City, on the weekend closest to the full moon in October and attracts visitors from all over the country and international tourists.
The Morobe Province Agricultural Society hosts the Annual Morobe Provincial Show, showcasing a variety of agriculture, horticulture, livestock, commercial, industry, education and culture activities, displays and events. It is the only Show of its kind still operating in Papua New Guinea. There are a number of Cultural Shows through the year but there is only one that has the array of activities like the Morobe Show.
The main attractions at the show include the cowboy events, traditional dancing, rides and entertainment, commercial, agricultural and horticultural displays and the popular daredevil bike riders.
The first Morobe Show was held on 24 October 1959 and aside from three different years when the Show was not held due to flood, civil unrest and a cholera out-break it has been held annually since then. 2020 will mark the 59th Morobe Show and if Covid-19 doesn’t interfere 2021 will be the 60th Morobe Show.
Whilst it is an Agricultural Society the show does emphasise on things agricultural while promoting many other facets that are of interest and of importance to the community. The emphasis in agriculture is focused on displays and judging of Livestock – mainly cattle, pigs, horses and sheep, Horticulture and Floriculture, Horsemanship and Cowboy events and activities. This also extends to Commercial Exhibitors that are involved in Poultry, Rice, Flour and production of other food crops as well as some more exotic rural activities including crocodile farming for skins and meat.
The show also focuses on displays featuring Schools and Educational excellence, Rural Districts that display the food and subsistence crops that are grown in the various Districts of the Province. The show also hosts a large Health Expo that provides information, testing and help in the areas of HIV Aids, Family and Sexual Violence, Red Cross and Blood Transfusions, Oral and Physical Hygiene and that also includes a number of NGO’s like Save the Children and WHO.
Commercial Exhibits occupy a large part of our Showgrounds and focus on all aspects of business life in Lae and Morobe Province displaying products, innovations and sort after merchandise to purchase including locally produced manufactured goods. These also extend into displays of sustainable sawmilling equipment and farming machinery and equipment.
As with all shows the world over there is the general entertainment that takes place in the main arena which includes motor bike jumping, horse and equestrian events, mock battles, traditional archery and athletic competitions as well as in the sideshow area where there is a ferris wheel, merry go round and a giant slide.
A unique aspect of our Show is the blend of the new and the traditional and there is Traditional Dancing (called singsings) generally involving between 1,000 and 2,000 participants who display a huge variety of traditional dancing, representing almost every Province in Papua New Guinea. It is the most diverse display of Traditional Dancing seen in Papua New Guinea. In the same vein there is the Morobe Show Queen and Pikinini Contests that also display traditional culture and dress.
In terms of numbers the show would generally end up with something in the order of 100,000 people in the Showgrounds over the Show weekend. That would invariably comprise approximately 75,000 people buying admission tickets; 10,000 involved in Commercial stalls, displays, food outlets, demonstrations etc; 10,000 competitors, marching groups, traditional dancers, performers; 2,500 Police, security and Defence Force personnel; 2,500 Society Members, judges, stewards, officials, overseas tourists. And for every person inside the Showgrounds there are as many outside the Showgrounds who for whatever reason don’t buy a ticket to come in but come to soak up the atmosphere.
The Society is run by an Executive Committee, a group of Councillors that control various ‘portfolios’ and a General Committee. The COMMITTEE is made of VOLUNTEERS. Aside from the staff, which grows from a minimum of 12 up to around thirty during the Show itself, no-one receives payment for their efforts. There is a large proportion of expatriates on the Committee and that is because many expatriates see their involvement in the Show as a way that they can contribute to the community during the few years that they are residing in PNG.
Our Committee and other important people in 2020 are:
- President: Mike Quinn ML
- Vice President: Hans Mehl LM
- Vice President: Wayne Uechtritz
- Honorary Secretary – CEO: Vacant
- Honorary Treasurer – CFO: Kapi & Clarke
- Showground Director: Xena Usu
- Agriculture Councillor: Amos Biueba
- Ring Events Councillor: Hans Mehl LM
- Floriculture Councillor: Anna Wissink
- Livestock Councillor: Vacant
- Commercial Exhibits Councillor: Bill Rainnie
- Business Councillor: Robinson Panako
- Security Councillor: Paul Pople and Finlay Matheson
- Health Expo Councillor: Norah Hau’Ofa and Rachael Nurvue
- Public Relations Councillor: Leo Lausie
- Cultural Dancing Councillor: Karen Quinn ML
- School Exhibits Councillor: Karen Quinn ML
- Horse Events Councillor: Jan Clarke
- Amusements Councillor: Jamie Mehl
- Show Queen Councillor: Maree Beirne
- Family Arena Councillor: Karen Quinn ML
- Next Generation Councillor: Vacant
- VIP Lounge Coordinator: Thea Mehl
Adrian Matheson, Michael Beirne, Murray Fletcher, Roy Beerwald, John Clarke, Peter Boyd, Leo Lausie, Katherine Davies, Helen Taylor, Dayne Quayle, Francina Thompson, Jenny Raia, Nancy Inai, Nelson Thom, Paul Murphy, Scott Randall, Harry Kaisa, Kyleen Ambelyne, Harold Richardson, Ian Jono, David Eshmade, Julie Fale, Gregory Dukduk, Carolyn Pelgen.
LIFE VICE PRESIDENTS
Tim Leahy, Chris Salmon, Jon Hamilton, Jim Jacobsen, Heather Atherton, Trevor Kennedy, Greg English, Mike Quinn ML, Glen Jacobsen, Jan Clark, Dianne Cross, Hans Mehl LM, Finlay Matheson, Christine King, John Clarke, Steve Lindeman, Phil Franklin MBE, John Mok, Carolyn Pelgen.
Arthur Ewig, Christine Holmes, Clarissa Reilly, Geoff Fahey LM, Renee Cluff, Colin McVae, Deborah Diezmann, Murray Fletcher, Lady Barbara Jephcott, Gwenda Hailwood, Des Lawton, Dennis Cotter.
Eileen Allan, Lady Barbara Jephcott, Jamie Graham, Ian Chow, Adrian Chow, W Milton Kirkwood-Scott, Simon Vandestadt, Beata Vandestadt, Justin Connoly, Murray Fletcher, Segmund Pelgen, Carolyn Pelgen, Suchira Nag, Steve Lindeman, Suzie Lindeman, Harry Laka, Mike Quinn ML, Karen Quinn ML, Scott O’Reilly OBE, Daniel King.
Our Shows would not be a success without the support of a large number of Corporate Supporters with the most notable being:
- Grand Champion Sponsor: Coca Cola Amatil
- Blue Ribbon Sponsors: Trukai Industries, Ramu Agri Industries
- Red Ribbon Sponsors: Bank South Pacific, The National
- White Ribbon Sponsors: Riback, Harmony Mining, Lae Biscuit
Plus many other highly regarded supporters and contributors.
- 1958-1964: A. J. Bretag (7 years)
- 1965-1974: J. H. Jacobsen (10 years)
- 1975: W. Kundin (1 year)
- 1976-1977: J. Sawanga (2 years)
- 1978: M. Galore (1 year)
- 1979: R. Taetaeng (1 year)
- 1981-1983: P. Homu (3 years)
- 1984: B. Oberleuter (1 year)
- 1985-1991: M. Kerro (7 years)
- 1992-2013: M. Quinn ML (22 years)
- 2014-2015: P. Franklin MBE (2 years)
- 2016-2020: M.Quinn ML (5 years)