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Ag Town of the Year

Kimba finally celebrates 2021 AgTown of the Year win

Ag Town of the Year

The Eyre Peninsula farming town of Kimba has at last celebrated its 2021 win of South Australia’s Agricultural Town of the Year Award, with nominations still open for the 2022 towns.

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The celebrations were held at the Kimba Gateway Hotel last Friday night, with members of the Kimba community present to commemorate the award.

The night included a sit-down dinner with guest speakers including Kimba Mayor, Dean Johnson; Member for Flinders, Sam Tefler; Executive Director at Primary Industries and Regions SA, Jo Collins; and Economic Development Manager for Regional Development Australia Eyre Peninsula, Trevor Smith.

Celebrations were previously postponed due to the ongoing pandemic and natural disasters that impacted the area.

Primary Industries and Regional Development Minister Clare Scriven said the Kimba community has shown exceptional resilience and strength, and the celebration held last week to mark their win was a true display of the area’s community spirit.

“Although delayed three times thanks to waves of COVID and severe flood damage, I heard it was a very successful and enjoyable event, representing the best of Kimba’s rich agricultural heritage as well as its innovative future,” Minister Scriven said.

Located at the midway point between Australia’s East and West coasts, the vibrant town finished ahead of Booleroo Centre, Kapunda, Mypolonga and Orroroo to take the prize as the state’s premier agriculture town in 2021.

“Kimba was the very worthy 2021 Ag Town of the Year winner,” Minister Scriven said.

“I offer my warm congratulations to the town and community on the win and their many achievements, fuelled by a strong spirit of innovation and future readiness.”

Kimba received the Agricultural Town of the Year Award for its community spirit and the way the farming community works together for the betterment of the town with endeavours such as investing in regional agricultural programs and expanding the teaching of agriculture in schools to educate future generations.

“Agriculture is a major part of our region’s economy, but so is community,” Sam Tefler, the Member for Flinders and the Shadow Minister for Local Government, said.

“The recognition of Kimba as the Agricultural Town of the Year is not just about farming but the whole community.”

Kimba Mayor, Dean Johnson said more than 50 per cent of the Kimba population regularly volunteers in community projects to continue town growth and development.

“I am super proud of our amazing community and how innovation is embraced and explored,” Mayor Johnson said.

One of these innovations is Workshop26, a not-for-profit marketplace for small businesses housed in a disused tractor workshop where local trading can flourish and visitors can get a taste of what Kimba has to offer.

“We are a true ‘can do’ town and we recognised with limited natural attractions we needed more. So, we built our own,” Mayor Johnson said.

“From our incredible silo art to the creative quarter of Workshop 26 to our triple-award-winning, free camp area.”

Kimba boasts other tourist attractions including the recently updated Giant Galah, the Kimba Museum and the Edward John Eyre Sculptures.

“Visitors say they can feel the vibrancy and positivity of our community and I agree, it’s truly palpable,” Mayor Johnson said.

“We’re a community that’s taken charge of its own future and this award helps us recognise what we’ve done, but also spurs us to go even further and continue building a positive future that we can share with visitors every day.”

The Agricultural Town of the Year Award, presented by the Government of South Australia and administered by Solstice Media, highlights the vital role that agriculture plays in the regional landscape – being the backbone of most regional communities.

Nominations for the 2022 AgTown awards are open now.

Finalist towns have promotional videos and stories produced for them by Solstice Media and the winning town receives a sign for the town entrance recognising their achievement, a community celebration event, and a feature in SALIFE magazine.

The Agricultural Town of the Year Award Program runs alongside InDaily’s regional news program and the 2022 winner will be announced at its Regional Showcase Awards in November.

Entries close on Friday 17 June. To nominate, visit www.agtown.com.au.

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