Bendigo LeisureFest attracts thousands

MORE than 14,000 camping and caravanning enthusiasts descended on Bendigo over the weekend for the annual LeisureFest. 

Organisers said bumper crowds turned out for the three day festival. 

More than 250 motor homes, caravans, camper trailers and fifth wheelers were on display. 

Caravan Industry Association of Victoria chief executive Rob Lucas said Bendigo had turned on the sunny weather bringing more people from around the region to the festival than last year. 

He said the Bendigo festival was the biggest regional show of its type in Australia. 

“People just love coming to Bendigo,” he said. 

“We have grown the show again so there is more to see, more variety. 

“As we keep growing, we get more people walking through. 

“People drive up to Bendigo just for the show and they tell me they love coming up here every year.”

Mr Lucas said the success of the show had proved that caravanning and camping were as popular as ever. 

“We are seeing people say that this industry is actually affordable,” he said. 

“Families are actually taking it up and because of that more and more exhibitors want to be here, that’s what grows the show, the demand from the consumers.”

VARIETY: Belinda Mills from Hillbilly Camping in Emerald shows her wares to Strathfieldsaye’s Janine Butcher. Picture: JULIE HOUGH

VARIETY: Belinda Mills from Hillbilly Camping in Emerald shows her wares to Strathfieldsaye’s Janine Butcher. Picture: JULIE HOUGH

Ian Ross and Pauline Coke from Lake Boga with DriveTech Sumo Springs rep Darren Cogdale

Ian Ross and Pauline Coke from Lake Boga with DriveTech Sumo Springs rep Darren Cogdale

Chris Sly, Matt Sly (son) and Harry Sly 3 (Grandson) and Alan Winzar

Chris Sly, Matt Sly (son) and Harry Sly 3 (Grandson) and Alan Winzar

The Snelling's from Shepperton Adam and Jade with Huntar 4 and Rydar 1 inside a Jayco Van

The Snelling's from Shepperton Adam and Jade with Huntar 4 and Rydar 1 inside a Jayco Van

John and Margaret Shotton from Elmore

John and Margaret Shotton from Elmore

In a Winnebago Ed and Rosemary Lithgow with Pat Wright and Peter Hooper

In a Winnebago Ed and Rosemary Lithgow with Pat Wright and Peter Hooper

Up from Kyenton Lindsay Boyer with Judy and Barry Hoffman

Up from Kyenton Lindsay Boyer with Judy and Barry Hoffman

Darren Grossman from 'Oz Tents ' in Harrietville (L) shows Bendigo's Jeff Torpy through one of his tents.

Darren Grossman from 'Oz Tents ' in Harrietville (L) shows Bendigo's Jeff Torpy through one of his tents.

Chris and Cheryl Carroll along with their son Peter try out the variety of camping chairs on the Lyal Eales stand

Chris and Cheryl Carroll along with their son Peter try out the variety of camping chairs on the Lyal Eales stand

Belinda Mills (L) from Hillbilly Camping in Emerald shows her wares to Strathfieldsay's Janine Butcher

Belinda Mills (L) from Hillbilly Camping in Emerald shows her wares to Strathfieldsay's Janine Butcher

Maurice and Moya Randall travelled from Woodstock in NSW with their stand. They are pictured having a well earned break.

Maurice and Moya Randall travelled from Woodstock in NSW with their stand. They are pictured having a well earned break.

David Miller from WA on his stand 'The Hose Bag''chats to Harcourt's Michael McLean

David Miller from WA on his stand 'The Hose Bag''chats to Harcourt's Michael McLean

Matt Bender and his 18 month old daughter Charlee from Lancefield check out a camper trailer

Matt Bender and his 18 month old daughter Charlee from Lancefield check out a camper trailer