Next event Sunday 29 July, 2018
Peek into the Past is when Tocal Homestead comes alive with the sights and sounds (and smells) of yesteryear. It is a wonderful old fashioned day out for all the family. Grandparents will reminisce, there's nostalgia for the parents and the children will make some very interesting discoveries about our past.
The sounds of working horses and heritage tractors and machinery mingle with the aromas of scones and apple pies baking in the old wood stove. Make sure you see the blacksmiths working at the forge and then enjoy a piece of damper from the camp fire, topped with 'cocky's joy'. Try your hand at the ancient art of water divining or a traditional bush game. Then watch the local straw broom maker at work - he'd be happy to sell you one.
Keep an eye out for the 'redcoats' of the soldiers of the 73rd Regiment of Foot, they will fire their muskets and march through the site - keeping law and order and the King's peace. And they don't mind if you wander around their encampment and chat to them about what they do.
Drop in to hear one of the history talks to learn how it all came about.
There is a heritage clothing parade, machinery demonstrations, farm animals, cart rides with Harry the Clydesdale and tractors at work. There is sheep shearing and working vintage machinery. On top of all that, there's lots of delicious homemade refreshments, or you can bring your own picnic to have on the lawn.
10am to 3pm
Adults $10, Concession $8 and school children FREE.
In keeping with our heritage theme, cash is preferred for transactions on site.
Follow Tocal Homestead on Facebook to find out more.
Next event Sunday 10 June 2018
Join in the fun as the "Spinning Knitwits" race against the clock to shear the sheep, spin the wool and knit the jumper, all in under 8 hours.
The "Spinning Knitwits" are a team of members from the Newcastle Spinners and Weavers Guild and are made up of seven specialist spinners and knitters with shearer Trevor Pike from Scone as their key team member. They have competed in this competition at Tocal for 10 years and currently retain the title of Australian Champions.
In 2009, the 'Spinning Knitwits" completed the competition with a winning time of 6 hours and 3 minutes making them the World Champions, ahead of the "Toronto Spiders" in Canada.
Each year teams around the world compete in their local communities and then lodge their times with the international adjudicators who announce the winners on the June long weekend (as it occurs in Australia). They must strictly follow the jumper pattern and timing requirements laid out by the international committee.
With all the fun of a shearing, spinning and knitting race, the event is a fundraiser for cancer research in each of the communities it takes place. At Tocal, the funds raised on the day are presented to the Mater Cancer Research Unit in Newcastle.
Over the years, teams have been from Japan (3), Canada (6), Australia (5), South Africa, England (4), Scotland (2), Netherlands, USA, New Zealand, and Slovakia.
This year the "Spinning Knitwits" are back at Tocal Homestead aiming to retain their Australian Champions title and have a hit at the World Champions title again.
Competition commences at 9am and throughout the day there are activities for visitors to join in; learn to knit, knitting races, textile crafts for all ages, a fabulous array of handcrafts and textiles to buy, raffle, shearing demonstrations, delicious refreshments all day from the Friends of Tocal, Tocal Homestead is open for inspection, with blacksmithing all day in the blacksmith shop.
8am – 4pm
Gold coin donation for entry to the function centre – funds to Cancer Research
Entry fee to view the Homestead.