MORE than 800 visitors had passed through the gates by lunchtime on the first day of the second annual HuntFest at Narooma.
By the end of the weekend on Sunday afternoon, the total number of paying visitors exceeded 2300, leaving organisers to declare the event an overwhelming success.
“And that’s not even taking into account all the kids as the kids under 16 came in for free,” South Coast Hunters Club and festival spokesman Onno de Smeth said.
“Everyone was just wrapped, particularly the exhibitors who all had a great weekend meeting people, making contacts and selling some pretty big items.”
This included the ATV four-wheeler dealer from Goulburn who sold three or four Polaris ATVs while Nick Jean-Mairet from Kingfisher Marine and Automotive also had a good weekend selling a couple of boat trailers, he said.
Popular exhibits included the archery range contained in a container, as well as the demonstrations from butchery to blacksmithing, while the pizza and venison food stalls were also popular, he said.
Next year, organisers hope to expand the stalls out onto NATA Oval as Mr de Smeth said the one consistent comment from the exhibitors was that they needed more space.
“We hope to have bigger stalls next year and to move more outside,” he said.
Exhibitors came from as far as the Gold Coast and Victoria, while the African safari representative came all the way from Africa.
Mr de Smeth said he had heard the town was noticeably busier and publican Paul O’Brien certainly had a packed house on Saturday night.
This year’s HuntFest had more than 44 exhibitors at the Narooma Sport and Leisure Centre displaying a variety of different products.
The smell of venison and goat bush burgers, snags and pizza wafted through the site, with fresh seafood also available for purchase.
Demonstrations of butchering were held throughout the day.
Security was high with a visible police presence and security guards scanned everyone entering the hall were weapons were on display.