Each year, Evandale in Tasmania hosts one of the more unusual national championship events.

People flock from all over the world to the…

Evandale Village Fair & National Penny Farthing Championship

National Penny Farthing Championship
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Off and racing in the National Penny Farthing Championship

Ok, so flock is a gross over-exaggeration.  But there are several contestants from interstate and even a few international enthusiasts,  and there was a big crowd at the 2010 spectacle to enjoy the entertainment and the fabulous summer weather.

Clowning Around at Evandale
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A clown waves to the Evandale Village Fair crowd

Penny Farthing Races

This is something you just don’t see everyday – and it was fun!   The races are exciting, captivating spectators behind the safety of the hay-bale barriers.

The riders clearly take the title very seriously, judging by the way they lean into the corners of the town circuit.

Geoff Semon, Evandale 2010
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Geoff Semon at the Evandale Village Fair, 2010.

Huw Morgan from New South Wales was the winner in 2010, consolidating his wins from the previous two years.  The race schedule is a day of solid activity:  there’s championship heats, novelty events and age-group races.

Postie Bike Race, Evandale
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One of the novelty events, the Evandale Postie Race

Evandale Village Fair

It’s not all sprinting though – the week-long penny farthing carnival includes road races, one covering an agonising 161kms.  Can you imagine spending all day in the saddle of an ancient bike?  Huw Morgan obviously can, as he finished in first place in this event too, just to prove his versatility!

Bagpipes at the Evandale Village Fair
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Bagpipes accompany the penny farthing races at Evandale

Held each February in Evandale (for over 25 years), the organisers have this show humming.  The National Penny Farthing Championship is combined with the Evandale Village Fair to provide even more interest for visitors.

Performers and stallholders take over the town oval, there are displays of vintage machinery and vehicles, and groups stroll the streets in period costume.  One lady even combined two of the highlights, performing tricks on a penny farthing bicycle in a long skirt!!

Evandale Penny Farthing Tricks
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Not just riding a penny farthing, but tricks in a long skirt!

Parade of the Penny Farthing Era, Evandale

Late in the afternoon, the show all comes together in a grand parade.  Utilising the race circuit around the village green, brass bands march between the vintage cars, the clowns and fairies and of course, even more of the old-time penny farthing enthusiasts.  Where else but Tasmania could you enjoy such a day out?

Evandale Grand Parade
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Vintage cars prepare for the Grand Parade

Evandale Ladies and Gentlemen in Costume
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The costumes match the era of the penny farthing bicycles

Penny Farthing Bicycles at Evandale
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Penny farthings, everywhere you look!

Admission to the Evandale Village Fair costs $10 for adults (children are free). For more information, visit the site for the Evandale Village Fair and National Penny Farthing Championship.

More images from the grand parade, held late in the day during the combined Evandale Village Fair and National Penny Farthing Championship…

Heritage Machinery at Evandale
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Heritage Machinery at Evandale Village Fair

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Map: Evandale Tasmania…