Over 100 people have gathered for the annual Macquarie Cotton Growers Association Cotton Seed Distributors awards evening in Dubbo recently.
This year the event was held at the Macquarie Inn on November 8, where guests enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere to catch up and socialise with all members of the different areas of the cotton industry.
The first award of the evening, the Tracserv Young Achiever award was presented by last years recipient Billy Browning from Narromine and awarded to Narromine grower Tim Gainsford.
The 2019 Jim Beale Memorial Services to the Industry award was very special this year. Earlier in the year John Hayes was nominated for the dedication and service he provided to our industry for over 40 years.
Many, whom the committee spoke with were overwhelmingly in support of Mr Hayes being a worthy recipient of the Jim Beale Memorial Service to the Industry award.
Sadly, Mr Hayes passed away unexpectedly, so it was decided to give the award posthumously. Mr Hayes' wife and daughter were able to attend the night and accept this special award.
The Elder family were able to say a few words about the support that John provided them over the years. Guests also heard from Mal Carpenter about the contribution that he made in the early days when getting cotton established in the valley.
This year there were three finalists for the Suncorp Top field award including P J Gibson, the Browning family and the Quigley farms.
However it was the Quigley Farms who took out the prize with a yield of 15.7 bales per hectares.
The final award, sponsored by Chesterfield, the farm of the year award is broken into two categories.
The average hectares planted in the Macquarie last season was 192 hectares and those who were above this were classified as large farms and those below that were classified as small farms.
The finalists for the small farm category were Flinn Pastoral company, McKinney Ag and TGR Farming. It was TGR Farming who was the winner with a farm average of 14.30 bales per hectare.
The finalists for the large farm, were Clint and Amy Davies, Quigley farms and McAlary Partnership. The recipient was Quigley farms, with a farm average of 14.37 bales per hectare.
This year the committee introduced a 'Valley Legend' category, with the idea to pay homage to someone who has been an integral part of the cotton growing community in the Macquarie Valley.
The association were pleased to honour Barry Dugan as the local legend of 2019.
Mr Dugan has been growing cotton in the valley for the last 39 years.
Glen Whittaker spoke about Mr Dugan's contribution to the valley over the years.
The only regrets Mr Dugan had, was that he didn't know about it so his speech was shorter than he would have liked.
Overall, it was a fun night and the association would like to thank all those who attended and the sponsors for enabling the awards night to go ahead, as well as the committee who made it all possible.