Gather, celebrate 55 years of Showgirl

1997 Showgirl Catrin Dunn with the special guest of that year's show Glen-Marie Frost from the Sydney Olympic Organising Committee.

1997 Showgirl Catrin Dunn with the special guest of that year's show Glen-Marie Frost from the Sydney Olympic Organising Committee.

Fifty-four young women have been sashed Forbes Miss Showgirl, and organisers of a luncheon celebrating the competition would love to reconnect with them all.

Sandra Low was the first young Forbes woman presented with the iconic sash in 1959, the next was Margaret Simmons in 1965.

Every year since then, a young woman has been chosen as representative of the Show and community.

1998 Showgirl Fiona Woodburn went all the way to Sydney and was named The Land’s Sydney Royal Showgirl, in 2017 Grace Allen was named runner up at State level.

Grace is encouraging other young women to consider getting involved as the Show seeks its 55th Showgirl this year.

“It is difficult to describe in words the sense of empowerment and strength I have developed,” Grace wrote in reflection on the competition.

“The countless opportunities, the people I have found myself surrounded by, the structure of conversations, the possibility for growth, the reality in planning for the future are all first-hand experiences made possible by the Showgirl movement.”

The celebratory luncheon is on Saturday August 25 at Forbes Golf and Sportsman’s Hotel and this year’s Showgirl entrants will be part of the event.

Organisers are hoping all the previous winners, those involved and those interested, will be there. 

Organisers have written to as many of the Showgirls as they can find, but they’re hoping to connect with any they have missed.

Our showgirls have been: Sandra Low 1959; Margaret Simmons 1965; Dianne Hodder 1966; Judith O’Brien 1967; Annette Bullock 1968; Elizabeth Watson 1969; Marla O’Brien 1970; Elizabeth O’Mara 1971; Margaret Cockram 1972; Patricia Bullock 1973; Robyn Miller 1974; Wendy Cartwright 1975; Debra Toole 1976; jenny toole 1977; Jennifer Sharp 1978; Vicki Sharkey 1979; Donna Sly 1980; Roslyn Rees 1981; Geanine Hurford 1982; Helen Rees 1983; Katie Weaver 1984; Carolyn Buttriss 1985; Bronwyn Dwyer 1986; Anita Neville 1987; Karen Haley 1988; Monique Hodges 1989; Justine O’Leary 1990; Jenny Zillman 1991; Kylie Keat 1992; Kristie Weaver 1993; Chantelle Hubbard 1994; Shannon Barnes 1995; Jahana Girot 1996; Cartrin Dunn 1997; Fiona Woodburn 1998; Kristie Thornton 1999; Karyn Teague 2000; Kirstin Harris 2001; Sharon Barton 2002; Chelsea Ridley 2003; Katrina West 2004; Alicia Green 2005; Joanne Mattiske 2006; Nadine de Wal 2007; Melanie Bett 2008; Sally West 2009; Bridget Sweeney 2010; Olivia Wright 2011; Sarah Sweeney 2012; Annabelle Green 2013; Shannen Toole 2014; Stacey Clarke 2015; Amelia Sweeney 2016; Grace Allen 2017.

Tickets for the lunch are available at https://forbesshowgirlluncheon.eventbrite.com.au For more information Susan Earl at dsearlx@gmail.com.