The South Coast Beef School Steer Spectacular, which will get underway in Nowra on Wednesday, is set to be the biggest yet.
Organised by the South Coast Beef Producers Association, the event will be officially opened at the newly refurbished Nowra Showgrounds at 9am this coming Wednesday, May 5 by Shoalhaven City Mayor Amanda Findley.
The event concludes after judging is completed on Saturday, May 8.
Last year's event was run as a "live streamed" event under strict COVID conditions.
The 2021 event will be returning to its traditional location of the newly refurbished Nowra Showgrounds.
This year's event has attracted a wide variety of schools from South Eastern NSW, with 15 schools from the South Coast, Southern Highlands and Southern Tablelands attending the event.
More than 400 students are expected to attend the spectacular and up to 60 cattle competing across multiple sections and categories in the annual hoof and hook competition.
Some of these schools are from as far as Narooma, Braidwood, Yass and Dapto, as well as many Shoalhaven and Southern Highlands schools.
It is estimated that more than 1000 students across all the schools have been engaged in the preparation of the steers for this event.
The original school based competition, sponsored by Manildra Stockfeeds, is open to all schools in the South East region.
This year, due to popular demand, the School Steer Spectacular has been extended to include an open division, whereby members of South Coast Beef Producers Association in association with competing schools can place steers into the open school challenge, which includes light, medium and heavy weight divisions.
The student education covers all aspects of beef cattle production, from the animal selection, genetics, breeding including the requirements for detailed reports written on the steers progress.
This is all in addition to the grooming, parading and the ultimate judging of beef production, the quality of the meat as it hangs in the coolroom, ready for market.