Craigie Avenue has been mentioned in a recent column and, after a drive through to the Lakes last weekend, I simply couldn’t resist mentioning another very beautiful one in our lovely region. Fairlie’s ‘Peace Avenue’.
Fairlie Township has acquired a quiet settled grace of its own, picturesque with groves and plantations of deciduous trees. Those planted along the main highway at the entrance to the town, both from east and west, deserve special notice. They are in great condition, obviously well maintained and managed over the years.
Situated on the road between Cricklewood and Kimbell, the Fairlie Peace Avenue consists of some 500 oak trees. Originally the avenue was intended to stretch from Cricklewood to Tekapo, but only the Fairlie trees were ever planted.
That planting was done by the County Council and named Peace Avenue to commemorate the signing of the peace treaty which ended the Great War of 1914 – 18. Fairlie’s fallen soldiers are commemorated by this beautiful living memorial of oak trees which lines its main street.
This photo was taken last weekend and the trees are just starting turn, right in time to be looking spectacular for the famous McKenzie a&P Show, a long standing feature of our Easter weekend.
According to the 2013 census Fairlie’s permanent population runs at 717. This figure pales in comparison to the amount of people that flock to enjoy the delights of the show on Easter Monday. A dedicated management committee of around 47 members meet monthly and all major decisions are made by them. There are an additional 100-150 volunteers who lend a hand on show day.
The Show began in 1899 and is organised by the Mackenzie A&P Society. This year will be the 120thannual show and in those 120 yrs. it has only been cancelled three times: 1925 because of the polio epidemic, 1943 WWII and 1948 infantile paralysis epidemic.
A high standard was set at the very first Show and the Committees over the years have worked tirelessly to provide, what is now known as, the largest one day Show in Australasia.
It’s a great family outing, something for everyone and well worth an early start to get a full day in admiring and exploring the varied exhibits and entertainment on offer. Patience is required for some of the car queuing but once inside there is plenty of room for all.
Have a Happy Safe Easter Break from us all at the Timaru Civic Trust.