Tathra pig racing an annual phenomenon

The annual Tathra Lions Club Pig Races descended on the Tathra Beach Country Club on Sunday and the crowds followed.

The races have quickly become a local phenomenon, mixing the adrenaline of racing with charity fundraising.

Pambula’s Alina Matterson brought her family along to the inaugural races in 2015, and said her children were disappointed to miss out last year while on holiday.

“We love it  because it’s good family fun,” Ms Matterson said after winning $970 for picking the fastest pig to the trough in Race 2.

“The kids love it and were really upset we were away last year and missed it all.”

Ms Matterson’s son Connor was all smiles after his mother’s win, and shared his reasons for coming.

“I enjoy it because the pigs are funny,” the 11-year-old said.

There was a swathe of Victorian visitors enjoying the overcast conditions and the music of Wallagoot’s Ricky Bloomfield, who entertained the crowd with a solo performance between each of the seven races.

Victorian tourist Adam Shalagan from Mount Martha brought his children along for a fun day out.

“It’s an absolute ripper,” he said.

FAMILY FUN: Alina Matterson of Pambula, with her son Connor, after her win in Race 2 of the Tathra Lions Club Pig Races on Sunday.

FAMILY FUN: Alina Matterson of Pambula, with her son Connor, after her win in Race 2 of the Tathra Lions Club Pig Races on Sunday.

The event is run by Kevin Kiley of Noah's Thoroughbred Racing Pigs, who has raised well in excess of $1million for charities over the last 16 years.

“The charity side of it is something that has really evolved,” he said.

Mr Kiley runs events from Cairns to Hobart, but said he always looks forward to the first event of the year at Tathra.

“I asked for a show of hands yesterday, and I think about 80 per cent of people there had never been to a pig race before,” he said.

Tathra Lions Club member Rex Kermode said the event increases in popularity each year.

“The partnership with the Tathra Sunshine Club Boardriders is the first step in a strong community partnership,” he said.

Proceeds from last year’s races went towards stage one of the Community Carers Accommodation at the South East Regional Hospital.

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